Tree of Life Review



AIRMAIL: Bodhi Blues — A Year in India: Questioning The Maitreya Project by Jessica Falcone

COLUMN: Storiedmusic — The Night I Walked Out by DJ T’challah

NOVEL EXCERPT: In a State of Partition by Aneesha Capur

UP THE CREEK: Editor’s Notes — Art, Yoga, and Abu Ghraib

Necklace of Silence

(Tylos Veriniai)

pure water poured —
but muddied

on the ground there were
drops — a few — of memory


beautiful one that returns
from far away journeys
from unfamiliar cities

smiling to yourself
mysteriously silent

beautiful one, that only just
before utterance


it’s already desolate,
already dawn
already morning twilight
some thoughts all of a sudden
some pulses of light sowing
time, hands, bodies

sweet disturbance
melting city
necklace of silence


from all of my lives
I remember one autumn
in the memory of that autumn
I peer through a rivery window
in that window
I see an open stretch of road
on that road
I find a footprint
in that footprint
I build a house
in that house
I plant my childhood fern
in that fern
I dream of a shining blossom
on that blossom
I see a fallen drop
in that drop
I recognize an old face
in that face —
I hear my own voice

Birute Mar

Birute Mar

A poet and actress, Birute Mar’s poetry collections include Neissiusti Laiskai (VPU Press, 1995), Kokoro (Vaga, 1999) and Solo (Strofa, 2001). A member of the ensemble of the prestigious Lithuanian National Drama Theatre, she has traveled across Europe and to South America and the United States giving award-winning solo performances of her adaptations of “The Lover,” “Antigone,” and “Words in the Sand” under the stage name of Birute Marcinkevicuite. This is her first publication in the United States.

POETRY: Necklace of Silence

J. C. Todd

J. C. Todd’s poems and translations have appeared in the anthology Shade 2004, and in American Poetry Review, The Paris Review, Prairie Schooner, Crab Orchard Review and other journals. Pine Press published two chapbooks: Nightshade (1995) and Entering Pisces (1985).

Awards include a fellowship in poetry from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, two awards for poetry from the Leeway Foundation, a Virginia Center for the Creative Arts international artist exchange fellowship to the Schloss Wiepersdorf colony in Germany, a scholarship to The Baltic Centre for Writers and Translators in Sweden, and a stipend from the Latvian Cultural Capital Foundation. Her poems have received five Pushcart Prize nominations.

She is an associate editor for the poetry web magazine, The Drunken Boat (, where she has edited special features on contemporary Lithuanian and Latvian poetry in translation, and she was guest poetry editor for the Summer, 2005 issue of The Bucks County Review, and co-editor of “Recurrence in Another Tongue: Poets Translating Poets” that appeared in Frigate 4 in 2003.

A lecturer in Creative Writing and in the Writing for College program at Bryn Mawr College, she has an MFA from the Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

SPOTLIGHT: The Quiet Maverick — An Interview with J. C. Todd
POETRY: Instant of Turbulence
POETRY: Men Kissing
POETRY: Necklace of Silence
POETRY: Nightshade
POETRY: Pissing