Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Something in August/william doreski

As you drive northeast through hills
crumpling and fading in rain
the horizon line warps to flatter
your otherwise failing ego
by centering you in a world
too small for its own ambitions.

Oncoming traffic shudders
with threat, but keeps in its lane.
Villages crouch by rivers kinked
like the cheap garden hose you bought
the morning after I dreamed I cut
my throat to honor some pagan god.

I warned you never to drive
alone in hard summer rain
with a criminal conscience brimming.
You don’t need actual felonies
to smelt yourself into an agon
Sophocles would nurse into drama.

To invoke similar catharsis
you only need landscapes adrift
in the corners of your eyes
while you cling to highways
that threaten to ghost away
in every direction but the one
you need to negotiate.

Stones creak as the rivers engorge.
The villages don’t recognize
the passions that empower you,
but even in the yellow rain
I could trace you by the trail
of fire you’ve spilled in passing;
and if I wanted to spite you
I could map it right to its source.

This Chemistry/sheila murphy

Tandem frees uniqueness from
a sheltering display behind the fence.

A headlamp beside falling snow reveals
the snow itself, conglomerate and yielding.

I bed you astride fever breaking
an inevitable turn inward to yourself.

Imaginary distance painted upon skin
admits a light returned from unknown source.

This chemistry resists the null hypotheses
coding joy to an ability to breathe.

What Is Hard To Avoid/scott keeney

I like goat's milk. Do you
like almonds, dust of morning,
which rhymes with guts of clocks,
meow, meow, meow?

I have studied some goodbyes
myself. In August winter,
the objective
dreams of science, the lest
we sift
of dirt—some wind in the eye.

Picture a goat’s wide oblong pupils, wise as an onion, unbroken as prose.

Wheel and handle, thumb in
the air. Oh, here is who
I am—what I wanted to say
was wordless. Here, kitty, kitty,

rub your skull against my knee.
For tomorrow will fall, the apple of us all.

Symphony No. 12 (formation of the labyrinth)/ric carfagna

Where finalities are sought
and dredged
like words
from terminal corners
of rooms
where there remain
a quantifiable measure
of self-identity
to extract  from
the guttering sentiments
festering behind
the sleeping eye
and to remember
this room
that was skeletal
    and surreal
        in intimate details
where faces of  strangers
would appear
divested of an essence
that interprets
the space between
the words that were
and sometimes
a ghost would appear
recalling the sallow desires
that breathed life
and then were left
as sea wrack
in a retreating tide
and many mark this
as a page once written
and not returned to
a blemish
better left forgotten
and a view
from a window
in a room
showing  grey clouds
above a garden
and an obliquely angled
    trajectory of sun
painting stains
    on a pavement
         in the foreground
and recalling to mind
    the facile significance
        in the walls of perception
erected by impermanent vessels
clothed in flesh and bone and blood
clinging to arcane verities
and deeply rooted anachronistic myths

Per Usual/philip byron oakes

Sleep of superlatives averaging out over a span of
pretensions, knitting character to a roseate wobble
of the times. Mouthfuls scarring silent nights.
Sculpting wrinkles in solace surrendered, in sacrifice
to balance hinging on the willfully unknown.
Complicity in mystery maligning fragile hopes for
shadows tossed about the yard. The heroically
ignored remodeling crannies in accordance, just
enough to explain what is so glibly away. Littering
the future of the past in the mind, planting gardens
where little is expected to grow. But the dank
burrowing niches in the depth, from which light
shrinks in concurrence with the simplicity of
assumptions. Beneath umbrellas of hyperbole
bloating the inverse, to feasibility amidst hopes
squandered, reining in the good and bad of it
sold to tourists as mementoes
of having lived.