by Joan Leotta
“Be still and know that I am God,” the Psalmist says. So many days I’ve lived in the noise of everyday obligations. Truthfully, I’m a creature of noise, a creature of my ties. When fear and anxiety kept us all inside and the only sounds about us were birds and squirrels, I decided one day to turn off television and radio, to still all fear and anxiety being proclaimed by media’s denizens of despair. I breathed deeply of the quiet air, So quiet I could hear The voice of God in the scripture I read each morning , Realizing that even when the noise returned, To the world around me, I could still focus on the quiet of that inner life, the one where God and I spent time together, just the two of us as he prepared me for days of chaos by offering me a way to order my life with hope and love.
Joan Leotta plays with words on page and stage. In addition to her ten published books, her varied writings have appeared or are forthcoming, in Ekphrastic Review, Pinesong, Brass Bell, Verse Visual, anti-heroin chic, Silver Birch, Ovunquesiamo, Verse Virtual, Poetry in Plain Sight, and others. She is a 2021 Pushcart nominee and received Best of Micro Fiction in 2021. In early 2022, she was named a runner-up in the Frost Foundation Poetry Competition. Her previous chapbook, Languid Lusciousness with Lemon, is out from Finishing Line Press. She is a member of the North Carolina Poetry Society, a member and area representative for North Carolina Writers Network and on the stage side of her work, member of, and as the coastal area representative for NC’s Tar Heel Tellers. Joan performs tales featuring food, family, nature, and strong women as a traditional teller and as several costumed characters.