By Sandy DeLuca


Stills I

The movie house is on Broad…
a soundless place now,
hollow, overlooked.

I came here with my parents, on Sunday evenings. After Asian food and sweet
tea. Dad held my hand as we crossed crowded walkways. My mother by my
side, auburn curls and flowered hat, a fur-trimmed coat. And Italian boys
gathered by a long-gone café, singing the blues, smiling when we passed.

They traipsed behind,
black leather, boots and wavy hair,
handsome and too sure.

A dark-eyed guy waved his hand, his gaze fixed on me, and he
whispered, “Don’t be afraid.”

But I loved the monsters, the shrieks…
creatures in the dark.

The silver screen…
Dracula, Frankenstein, mummies…
forlorn gals, black cats
midnight moons.

Those impressions remain within ruined walls. And I see that boy on autumn
twilights, his words indecipherable, his shadow looms, intertwines with other
ghosts…with melancholy…with death.

Stills…flashes of make believe…
A lost girl rambles through a graveyard where blackbirds hover, felines and
fairy women. There until the credits roll…gone too soon…like everything that’s

A rumor
from the balcony…
“I remember.”

Stills II

The zombie wanders…
No one talks about her anymore, or brings flowers to her tomb.

The vampire queen dies every time…a stake through the heart.  You can catch
the flick on Friday night.

I read the actress lives in a loft in Soho…
swollen arms and legs, needle marks on her flesh…
olden magazines scattered on
the floor. 
Young forever on those pages…

The scream queen has lost her mind, believes that cats and witches crawl across
her skin…
the stories fade…
just like her name…
whisper it…softly…
and the face in the mirror
turns to dust…

Nothing lasts forever…not beauty, not the thrill of Sunday night…or
unattainable city boys.
But I will always sing to the monsters…
they come to me, taking form with pen and ink, with paint that drips like
their faces white, roguish stares and murderous deeds…
I’ve loved them all my life.

Sandy DeLuca’s art has been exhibited throughout New England and in New York’s Hudson Valley. She has written and published numerous novels, several poetry and fiction collections, an art chapbook and several novellas. As an author, she is known for dark and surreal prose, often visceral and shocking. While DeLuca is best known for her work in the horror genre, she has written noir fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, and mainstream fiction as well.

She was a finalist for the BRAM STOKER© for poetry award in 2001, with Burial Plot in Sagittarius, which was accompanied by her cover art and interior illustrations. A copy is maintained in the Harris Collection of American Poetry and Plays (Brown University) Poetry, 1976-2000. She was also nominated once more in 2014, with Marge Simon, for Dangerous Dreams.

DeLuca retired from her day job several years ago and now spends her days making art and writing.

Published 10/29/20

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