Poems by Lilia Lukowsky 2018

LILIA LUKOWSKY leads a double life as a poet and scientist. Growing up in Ukraine, she was fascinated with the works of great Russian poets. After arriving in Los Angeles, Lilia’s poetry has transitioned from Russian to English and broadened to addresses social and environmental justice, empowerment of women, against Antisemitism, racism, and misogyny. Lilia belongs to Las Lunas Locos, a community of self-identified women. Some of the submitted works were created or inspired by Luna’s circle.


Late Autumn is wrapped in fog like in scarf;

Time passes by monotonously, don’t stop!

A Flower was ripped from the ground and forgotten there;

Now it’s slowly dying on a pavement, but no one cares.

The Rain is quietly singing a song about Summer,

And Wild Geese are flying away, toward South.

An Hour After Sunset

It begins with a stillness of a time falling asleep.

Flowers closing their buds

after being kissed by light

for the eternity of the day.

Roses blushing with

all shades of pink.

Tulips mixing all

the colors of the rainbow

inside their petals.

Daffodils in matching dresses

challenging the sun to a brightness contest.

But an hour after sunset the colors fade,

and garden calmly waits for the shadows

of the night to creep in

and cool off the passions of the day,

as they too must leave.

My parents never prayed like that

He leaps out of the car hurriedly.
With an excitement of a youthful energy,
he grabs his books and rushes towards
the gate soon to be locked.
He nods to someone,
he high-fives another along the way.
I watch him disappear
in a sea of backpacks and lunch boxes.

It’s time for me for me to leave,
but instead I close my eyes and say a silent prayer.
I ask for him to be alive at the end of day
when I come to pick him up.
I don’t pray for extraordinary things,
I pray for his day to be uneventful.
I don’t want the park to be named after him,
I just want him to be home for dinner.

I start the car, ready to be on my way,
and then it dawns on me that
sending me to school in the mornings,
my parents never prayed like that.

The opposite of truth is not lie but ignorance
The opposite of love is not hate but indifference
The opposite of joy is not sadness but emptiness
The opposite of friendship is not enmity but loneliness
The opposite of life is not death but hopelessness
The opposite of success is not failure but inaction


17 minutes of silence

58 minutes of silence

49 minutes of silence

14 minutes of silence

26 minutes of silence…

If I take a minute of silence for

every life lost to gun violence,

I’ll have to spend the rest of my days silent.

Is silence the best that we can do?

As She Watches

Her body wrapped in a purple shawl
embroidered with constellations
as she awaits a collapse
of the most recent civilization.

With a vacant glare she wonders
If this one would make
even a slight difference,
leave even a tiny mark.

She had seen it all.
Fiery clouds spewing flames,
turning her skin into ash.
Deep dark oceans rising,
Spilling her tears.

But this one, she thought, would be different.
After two millennia of anger and greed,
she had hoped they would learn
to love her beauty and share her riches.

“Why did it not happen?” she puzzles.
“Is it still possible?” she asks herself.
And with that, Mother Earth takes a heavy sigh
And turns her attention back to the Cosmos.


When I Walked

I walked from person to person,

from relationship to relationship,

from place to place

I’ve spent a lifetime walking away,

away from pain, demands, expectations of sacrifice

I walked, and I walked,

I was restless looking for a place to rest,

and yet, I kept walking

never resting,

never slowing down,

never committing to anything

I walked long and far, until I walked into your arms…


When the Words Won’t Come

When I stare at a blank screen, my mind is equally blank

and the words won’t come

When the darkness expends to infinity blocking my vision, and I can see nothing but darkness

and the words won’t come

When in the middle of a night I find myself curled in a fetal position, shaking

and the words won’t come

When the tightness of my chest can no longer hold the terrors of my mind

and the words won’t come

When the flood of tears breaks the dam of calmness

and the words won’t come

When the thoughts rush in with the speed of light, one worse-case scenario per millisecond

and the words won’t come

When I swallow the pill to quiet the monsters of my own making

and the words won’t come

When I have so much to say

but the words still won’t come…