Just the Facts Ma’am

Just a few quick announcements:

1. You can now read Issue 14 of Structo, which features my poem In Brighton, for free.

2. The literary magazine, Out of Our, which featured my poem Outlines and Associations in their 13th volume ended their run with Volume 17. I was going to provide a link to their site, but it doesn’t even exist anymore. The site for Thoughtsmith, which featured my poem Seeds, has also ceases to be. So, that makes eight journals which have featured my work and then gone bust. I certainly hope I’m not bad luck. Regardless, I’ve included the poems below so that they can live on (for whatever that’s worth).

Outlines and Associations

In one breath: necessity, invention. The brush strokes of a single day.
When your eyes have been closed, nothing looks quite the same.
Between prayer and purchase, the asymmetry.
Fondness makes the heart grow distant.
The hymnals sit untouched for years.
Paths forged and followed decide where you’ll find
your source of light and cast your shadow.
By development or disaster, we’re all backed into corners.
The wrong things matter in these circles, like the lesser
and greater gears of machinery grinning with stained, broken teeth.
Always traveling, often lost. Do birds appreciate their wings?
Flowers grow towards rays and moths fly into flames.
Suddenly, another option. I trace silent flecks of dust
floating in the stream of light sliding through the windowpane.
Audience to the paradox, my favorite distraction:
the hand that catches the snowflake and the eyes that watch it melt.
I often feel I’m on the verge the way an animal appears
partly obscured by the bars of its cage. What am I meant to learn
from silence? Inconspicuous: unsent letters, blueprints scrapped,
passing away like broken habits. Don’t wait for it to happen,
anchored to everything you can deny. So easily swayed,
yet so hard to convince. Will you recognize it when it’s time?

*

Seeds

The boy with a sparkler can’t understand.
For him it’s all just light and color.
No connection between bombs bursting
in air and comrades tattered by shrapnel.
Ornate explosions could easily be flowers
blooming, leaving imprints you still see
with closed eyes and a holiday pride
putting down its deepest roots subtly.

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