Literature In Los Angeles

Author Archive


In POETRY on October 11, 2016 at 1:10 pm

Poem by RK Wallace.

Los Angeles Approves New Campaign To Aid In City's Homeless Crisis

Green Card alien,
standard two year probationary period;

no social

no medical

but there was free,
soda pop

A thousand bucks
for two hours in a hospital
bed, dehydrated from flu.
I was told to drink more
liquids, rehydrate
what they adopted two centuries ago as
Scottish Common Sense Realism,
but, the TV advert said we had to cut back because of the
water shortage in Southern California.

I was told I might experience some dizziness,
the virus was affecting my balance.
The doctor advised me,
“it’s like a military invasion, even when it leaves,
its imperialist presence can still be felt.”

An hour later my ex wife helped me
dribble out of the car,
morphined out of my face,
she could have been anyone.

I couldn’t stop laughing at the state
of the world, and myself.

A foreclosure sign
sprang up in the garden
of a neighbour’s home,
like the genetically modified
flowers on the beds
of the synthetic lawns
they once prided themselves
with. The tears of the night
street sprinklers started to engulf me.

The recycled waste
water felt like velvet
upon my drugged up skin.

However, when that wet layer of marine like
medical fog wore off,

I realised;

I could have taken a three thousand mile ride
on a jumbo jet back the U.K. for much cheaper than
a two mile ride in an ambulance or a fire truck,

instead of worrying about where my rent was
going to come from for the next two months.  

But that’s ok, some places even give you
free refills of salad and bread!

Poem by RK Wallace.

Photo by David McNew/Getty Images.


In POETRY on July 21, 2016 at 1:57 pm

Poem by Jared Fortunato.


Stars on the sidewalk  
cracked black granite set with gold
cigarette butts and styrofoam cups
litter the firmament beneath the feet
of defiant girls walking two abreast
icicle heel percussion  
igniting dust to crackle static charge  

Temples on the corner  
step ziggurat in plaster and neon  
spandex prayers and tinsel offerings
siren through air conditioned doorways
calling camera blind tourists  
forensic glass rituals   
sacrificing breath to the sun  

Poem by Jared Fortunato.

Photo by Jared Fortunato.


In POETRY on December 8, 2015 at 4:33 pm

Poem by Liliana Isella.


On Benedict Canyon, I get lost.
On a poisoned letter
through a naked chest
under a sunny lie.

The erratic road
to the ledbetter of my memories.

Valentine’s Day.
The key is forever close
and your gate is never coming.

Crimson smiles to soften your iced feel.
The dinner crumbles on the velvet altar
as the candle runs out of its last breath.

Under your porch, I light one.
The deaf wind of your absence
dances the miserable trail
of this famed curse.

Benedict, rock this end
in a dreamy cradle of bitterness
sips from needles through incurable veins
to end a river of stolen violets.

Bless this slumber
on the holy birthday of violence
dying leaves between silks of sacrilege
in a worn-out bed of scarlet photographs.

Waits to be forgiven
agonies to be buried
white flowers falling from blue shutters
into the last night of fire
of my breaking shiny mirrors.

Poem by Liliana Isella.

Photo: Elisa Rebeca Bridges.


In POETRY on March 24, 2015 at 3:12 pm

Poem by Liliana Isella.

lila img2

Now that I’m tied up to this floor
I can tell you.

I can tell you of the blood
the blood I spit in the silence you left
the blood I breathed in from the tears you gave me
the blood I painted all over the nights you stole away.

I miss you.
I miss the sun in your walls
I miss the summer up your stairs
I miss the sand in your hand.

You’re the arrow in my feet as they slide on this ocean of wood
you’re the touch in my hair as it breaks free from its duty
you’re the whisper on my skin as the piano plays our last note.

Poem by Liliana Isella.

Photo by Ballerina Project.


In POETRY on January 17, 2015 at 5:17 pm

Poesia di Liliana Isella.


entrare nei tuoi occhi
correre tra i tuoi pensieri
scivolare sulla tua voce

perdermi fra i tuoi respiri
inginocchiarmi fra le tue mani
baciare il tuo sapore

afferrassi le mie corde
spalancassi le mie porte
piegassi le mie ultime forze

nascondermi nel tuo nome
rifugiarmi fra le tue parole
sciogliermi nel tuo dolore.

Posia di Liliana Isella.


In POETRY on January 11, 2015 at 2:22 pm

Poem by Jonathan Doughty.


Actors are best at smoke and mirrors
So habits daylong but hidden confess
Talent’s torsion
Injecting that experience released in memory —
Likely along other tracks?
A mind expansive
And forward-thinking
Seeks a safe body

Salt earned and shed in a ring or cage, or
Back at bars on breaks from a stage
A life of liver shots, both

Dangerous recreation under blowing snow, both
While she climbed Everest then froze happy
He sniffled and smiled after-hours in Toronto

Honesty calls
All life
Successful risk
In a curved universe,
Running as fast as possible
Finds yourself slowly back where you began

Stop ahead

Poem by Jonathan Doughty.


In POETRY on September 1, 2014 at 3:16 pm

Poem by Liliana Isella.

you saw my theethless time
suns crushed on pearled ceilings
twilights in line on a highway of ice

life that cannot be stopped
by a ring of steel without its bride
by a white crinkled veil over a pillow of needles

empty promises under bridges of ocean
night of the seagull that slashed its wings
twisted crossroads of sunburst backs

now and ever, Los Angeles
your candles fire dreams
and all your stars go up in smoke.

Poem by Liliana Isella.

Photo by Alice Sienna.

che hai visto il mio tempo senza denti
soli spappolati su soffitti di perle
tramonti in fila su asfalti di ghiaccio

vita che non puo` essere fermata
da un anello d’acciaio senza sposa
dal velo d’un cuscino pieno d’aghi

promesse sotto ponti d’oceano
notti di gabbiani senza ali
crocevia di schiene assolate

ora e sempre, Los Angeles
le tue candele accendono sogni
e tutte le tue stelle vanno in fumo.

Poesia di Liliana Isella.

Foto di Alice Sienna.


In HOLLYWOOD on December 20, 2013 at 3:47 pm
Liliana Isella about playing in “Happily Whatever After” at The Next Stage Theater in Hollywood.

Being a dreamer is a weird, tough, stellar and tragic place to be. Hollywood, is where that place becomes real. And the dreamer becomes true.

I don’t think that these years in LA, the silly job as hostess, the why do I do this?!? dance classes, the writing (why do I do this?!? n.2), the multiple obsessions, the yes and the nos, the angels and the monsters would feel the hot and the deep they feel right now if I didn’t start acting class, get into this play right away and spend some real, quality time in Hollywood. The Hollywood streets, not the hills.
The only regret I have is that I didn’t pick up acting before; I was ashamed of being “another actress” in Hollywood. Yes, it is definitely something to be ashamed of. And, I’m so proud of it!
Let’s just talk about last night, for example. My two friends who came to see me, Hillary and Katie, confessed me that, under a series of hilarious-beyond-believable coincidences, at first thought that the theater where I play, The Next Stage Theater, was a shady cover for “porn movies” and I had been “coerced” and I was “getting fucked backstage”. OMG, 3 am in the middle of the night, after a huge pizza—me, who would never eat and sleep that late unless dirty Hollywood is involved—I went to bed still laughing at this and I did the same this morning, first thing when I opened my eyes.
Two hours earlier, 1 am, let’s watch this: the homeless guys who live right around the corner from the theater, the ones that when I walk by during the day sleep and smoke and then sleep again and pee in their pants and I have to jump over their pee to make it to the theater, were serenading us with a guitar and a Christmas song. It was the first time I was seeing them alive and smiling and didn’t feel my heart cramping while looking at them wondering if they are ODing right there, on that dirty sidewalk, under my “pee leaps”.
One hour and a half earlier, 11.30 pm: the cool (“cool” for that Sunset-La Brea block standards) bar my friends took me to after the show, The Woods, has nothing but the same name of the place where the Cinderella’s Stepmother I play in the theater upstairs lives. But, looking around the bar, I’ve decided that I’d rather live in my character’s woods, than in that bar. Supposedly, in her woods there is a Nobleman to seduce and marry at any cost; in that bar, instead….
And, what about the handsome, harmless, hopeless young man wearing a “Fatal” t-shirt getting arrested for stealing a kid bike?!? That happened right in front of me while walking to the theater before the show, six hours earlier, 9 pm. For a second I thought that the sirens and the cops suddenly cutting my way were after me! But then I noticed the “fatal” figure and… I got it. I mean, how can you even hope to not get busted if you are a 5′ 10″ man walking down La Brea holding a tiny kid bike you just stole?!? Oh boy… fatal, he was and, indeed, fated. So beautiful, so vulnerable, so trapped. God bless him.
And then, this morning, back to “normal”. The clean and neat streets of Santa Monica, the English grace, wit and impeccability of Ballet Mistress Margaret Hill’s ballet class at Westside Academy, the Christmas shopping under a VIP sun on the Third Street Promenade… and last night feels like it never happened. But, it did. Because, since then, an obsessive thought has been following me up to here: this town belongs to no one—no one!—no one but the lost, the lonely, the hungry, the dreamer.

Story by Liliana Isella.

Photo: Liliana Isella by Angela Marklew.

Info about the play Happily Whatever After:

The Next Stage Theater
1523 N. La Brea Avenue
Hollywood, CA 90028
(theater upstairs, valet parking $3)

12/12/2013 @ 9.30 pm
12/19/2013 @ 9.30 pm
01/02/2014 @ 9.30 pm
01/09/2014 @ 9.30 pm
01/16/2014 @ 8 pm
01/23/2014 @ 8 pm
01/30/2014 @ 8pm
02/06/2014 @ 8 pm


In LITERARY FICTION on August 19, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Short Story
by Liliana Isella.

I see you, from the consumed sheets of the hotel room, through the black glass of another sin scene, beyond the reflection of too many rays of lies.

I see you, on your way back to Los Angeles, driving away from our endless night of melting candies, milky stars and wide-open kisses.

I sense your fear, as it goes down on the brake of the emergency lane.
I walk behind you in the wind, toward the edge of the freeway bridge, as its sandy roughness defeats your half closed eyes, traps the running tears in your fine hair and enters a tremor in your flawless fingers.

And I am there to hold your body, when the dawn sends back to you the red rose you’re trying to thrash away.
Just before you left us, I hid that evidence of our disembarrassed pleasure and shameless devotion in the metal strings of your guitar.
As this air of fire entangles the petals of our obsession in my long, ruffled hair, my lips gently die on your neck and my eyes stop dreaming on your shoulder.

You sit back in your car; your guilty hands pull your hair back with your Ray-Bans and turn on the last segment of your run home… Exit light, enter night….*

And it’s your wife, who opens the door.
Her coarse laugh is an ashtray of reassuring misery, good to tell the kids the merry lies they pray to hear.

Your little daughter is waiting under the presents tree.
She comes and takes my hand, up to her room.

I smile at my fate, wrapped as a gift on her soft bed.
She locks the door and seats my dreamless childhood in her reign of magic snowflakes, Nordic fairies and smiley elfins.

I let her delicate smell of dusting powder close my eyelids down.
Slowly, she lays a grain of sand into my right hand and moves my head on the border wall of all her nightmares.
“Can you hear her too? Can you hear my mom crying alone in their bedroom?”

In the crumpling of the paper tissue, my blindness starts counting the last seconds of its eternity.
Right before her white hands lose their innocence into the same bloody reddishness of this Vegas sunrise, we both can’t think of anything but you.

There will never be, for us, another night to sink the bitterness of our loveless memories in the warm ocean of your redeeming arms.

Story by Liliana Isella.

Painting by Edgar Degas, After the Bath or, Reclining Nude  ~ c.1885


* Enter Sandman by Metallica


In POETRY on March 26, 2013 at 7:59 pm

Poesia di Liliana Isella.

Mexican Lover


i dadi tirati

su un tavolo in discesa


le tue dita

fra il sudore della mia terra


i miei battiti

dentro il sale dei tuoi respiri


le tue note

all’ombra della mia pelle


le lune e i giorni

che rimpiangono i tuoi occhi.

Poesia di Liliana Isella.

Foto di Oriela Medellin Amieiro.

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