Monday, October 26, 2009

Dear Godfrey Logan:

Please find below four poems for _(A Brilliant) Record Magazine: "Confession #12", "Inventor's Glee", "On Being Human" and "Your Odds".
My work has been featured or is upcoming in Two Review, decomp, Poesia, Ouroboros Review, MiPoesias and Existere, among others. My chapbook Micropleasure was published by Leadfoot Press in 2008. I reside in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where I assist in editing the eclectic literary journal Third Wednesday.

Janann Dawkins

Confession #12

There is no speaking.
She talks to herself
even though she has

a roommate who won't
talk to her. The roommate
stalks through the house,

stirs the widening doorframes,
retreats to the bedroom
behind her head, riffle

shuffles for a game of solitaire.
On the other hand she has
a jukebox full of atonal music,

enough to speak to the damned.
She talks to the music, plays her hand
and demonstrates the mania

of listening everywhere:
she closes her eyes
and stares.


Inventor’s Glee
(in the wake of a successful poem)

My entire
tarpaulin skin
shimmers like a
licked clitoris
on orgasm,

my ears whine with the charge
of camera-flash,

my shadow
becomes my secret admirer

and my neurons anticipate
the synapses of others.

I'm thus afflicted for hours.


On Being Human

Eat, sleep, and excrete.
With luck, you fuck.


Your Odds

You can’t elude it. Were it
a fire you’d trance

as your pantslegs
dazzle with heat.

It’s red; it’s black.
No matter your turn, it’s there

to greet you, the beggar
trawling for change: you,

upended, surrender
your last bit.
Dear Mr. Logan,

Please consider my poem, "Eleven,"
for publication in (A Brilliant) Record Magazine.
Thanks for your time.

Matt Caliri


O Father Of Mercy
Wash out this grief you shower
Over me and the land,

Ring out the spirit
And Saturday our love's weeks
Like light through locked twigs,

Beyond the puddled boy
Crying in vain for solace
Sung all about him

With worried weather,
Arise in your emptiness
Head-high like the sun.

Stars are for darkness.
May each night blanket blessings
Down Heart's corridor

And the floors of joy
Shift shapelessly through lives
Like mud on apples

In a woven dreamland,
Floating as God's single thought,
Making rich your harmony

As the cross flies off
And the Bible loads squirt guns
And "grace" replaces "debt"

Replaces tongue and
Speech in swirling compassion
Viewed from your own chair

You made from pictures
And lightbulbs and fake noses
And dusty open cheer

Up! The baby smiles
Your world of grief has shattered.
Light has pierced the dark.
Well Godfrey, ask and ye shall receive! Sorry if I have been awol. Glad to see that Record still rolls along. I think James D. Ardis shows some good promise. Anyways, the last couple of months have been busy with re-orienting my life around and working at summer camp. Nevertheless, here are some poems for your enjoyment and consideration. Hope all is well, - Ben

In the End is the Word Our passion sets up apart
With a light that goes on and off
In its own way and pace,
We recognize ourselves as we rise,
Touch the floor with our feet
And head off into the day,
Each made whole by a destination
That does not overlap with any other,
Though the paths might collide.

God is another name for our desire,
And the idol reflects back to us,
We celebrate it and pray to no other,
In time we leave all churches
Close all the holy books
In order to turn the world our own way
Upside down with us on top,
And as each of us takes to such cycles,
We have loves, no enemies,
The idols are real and all else is an illusion,
There are only obstacles in holding each other,
Our passion sets us apart.

Runaway Horses

I became used to the new shapes
That she made in the bed quite easily,
Even when they changed with breathing.

Now the sheets are flat and seem
To go on forever, I remember
The way she would block the moonlight

And the moonlight now flows
All over me and I am drowning,
That feeling was never there before.

Her perfume never smothered,
Never filled my throat or lungs,
It reached my heart and mind first

Before taking time to travel and circulate,
It gave me clouds that I alone
Could sense on otherwise clear days.

Now I roll up towards her again,
Can she hear my breathing?
Has she been remembering my arms at night?

I have been her perfect tourist,
Making a souvenir of everything given,
Even the bites and cuts.

One certainty, I have been missing her,
The question is in other bosom,
Will she ever miss not seeing me?

Empty Squares

The floor was too hard,
Perhaps under it was better,
Sleeping with the pipes and rats,
But I had a sponge put out
And slept on the division bar,
Thinking of myself as a remainder.

The sponge was hard too,
It was trying to flatter the floor,
I tried to make a field of sheets,
Where I would be held up
On a small patch of thin ice.

Of course it was too cold
And I felt like I had slipped,
I imagined my pillow was a cloud
Raining on everything below me,
It drew the lids down well
And laced the lashes shut.

The Age Demands It

If this is a iron age, so be it,
A golden age shines,
But bends too easily for descendents,
It never breaks and is rubbed thin,
A silver age stretches time
Into a lake to sit and glitter,
But it tarnishes and causes insanity,
Carrying lead under its skin,
A bronze age is a stronger imitation
Of the golden, but an iron age
Will give us something heavy,
Something useful for swords and ploughs.

Index of First Lines

A cold coming we had of it,
After the torchlight, red on sweaty faces,
Although I do not hope to turn again
Among the smoke and fog
Of a December afternoon.

Midwinter spring is its own season.
Here the crow starves
The songsters of the air repair,
The winter evening settles down.

The eagle soars in the summit of heaven,
There are those who would build the temple,
Let us go then, you and I
We are the hollow men.

A More Perfect Union

The earth is not perfect,
Not as a flat circle making
Euclid and Pythagoras giddy,
Or a sphere that spins,
It bulges at the middle
Like us in old age,
And why should it not,
It’s got billions of candles
Still left to blow from so many birthdays,
Attended by a family of planets
Growing distant every year.

It does not even travel
In perfect circles, it does not move
As Ptolemy and Aristotle
Tried to choreograph it,
It does not stay still, silent
Firmly grounded, because
It is the ground itself, it had nothing
To reach out and hold onto,
The thing comes back to where it started,
But wobbles in an oval, drunk
On the gravity of the sun.

Everyday perfection is a dull joy,
Bright for a moment, colors
And shapes too well defined
Begin to melt us, break us down,
We feel apart from the earth,
And disgusted with ourselves,
We cannot have such white teeth,
Happy families, clean bathrooms,
The world we make was imperfect,
Off-center, poorly defined, the edges
Blending into one another, the horizon
The only straight line to worry about.

Dreams are now our approachable reality,
The waking life is a mirror,
Reversed, imperfect, a shadow
Of a Platonic realm, the veil
Has fallen, with curtains not far behind,
What was always present, always real,
The stench and the grind,
Is now the treasured thing, the exotic,
The vanguard and the avant-garde
Lead us back to the cave.

The perfect things I store
In a menagerie between my ears,
On a shelf with the straightest lines
I’ve ever seen, I take them out
When the day is rough, when
The wobble is too much,
Or the spin too fast, when
I want the oval to drag us into Mars,
Then will be the time for perfect things.

A Narrative Maybe

Let your envy perfect you,
That flame inside, make it
Brighter, and burn away
Those impurities, that heaviness
That kept you down.

They spend too much time
Waiting for chemicals,
Elements are slow to react
With words placed on tables,
There is antidote, because
There is no poison, all life
Is non-toxic.

When I sit and admire you
Across the room, don’t
Take that as a compliment,
You had nothing to do
With that nose, those lips,
(I look around the piercings,
My eyes are not magnets.)

I don’t understand, we’re right,
We made love, I think,
And I tried to sell what came out,
Don’t look ashamed, you asked
For ten percent, but the merchants
Were picky, their dollars smell
Like vinegar, they want to keep
Digits constant as their fingers shake.

Sorry it’s blue,
My chemical companions,
Do not mourn the loss
Of synchronicity,
Remember someone
Is always finishing your sentences
Somewhere else,
No one writes alone.

Thursday, October 22, 2009


The Poetess

Oh, Jesus Christ,
another message light blinking
What is this man thinking?

Night after night,
taking such delight in flooding my aura,
my hearing, my sight with lewd, lascivious
desires to own me, touch me,
undress and possess me--

a woman he’s never met

I suppose that will teach me
to try to be kind to a clearly lonely,
warped and unloved mind
his soul aching for resurrection,
so desperate for connection
in a world deliberately passing him by
unwanted, ignored

Now I see why

Godammit ,
It’s still ringing!
Can't he just leave me alone?
I want to be able to pick up my phone
without hearing the heavy broken voice
of celibate desires, unquenched fires
saturating my senses with his wanting

I’m being victimized, terrorized,
dissected and vandalized,
my thoughts and words stolen,
looted, manipulated and diluted
by a strangers idea of love perverted
and diverted my way

Is there no disguise in which to hide
From these probing, voyeuristic eyes?


The Reader

Oh, look at her words gloriously heard
solely in my mind as I read them convinced
she cries out in a night echoing with pain
from love torn wounds only I can hear and heal

How I long to feel her skin
shimmering white, trembling in delight,
bathed in love starved, lingering kisses
laid upon a body unknown,
yet hungered for

Desires inspired by this verbal siren,
I can close my eyes, almost feeling her presence
breathing deeply of her essence
unknowingly consumed by the fires
she’s ignited with her words

No one understands her like I--
Perhaps I should pick up my pen,
remind her yet again

I must open her eyes,
make her see she belongs to me,
destined to be mine …

… forever

awh @March 2009

The Rumor Game

Ah, he said, she said,
it’s the hottest game in town!
Cock that verbal gun, take aim and fire!
Let’s see who can cause the most dissension,
get the most attention, with their
worded blood lust desire?

Load up those bullets
and shoot ‘em kids,
let’s fire at the weak and downhearted
Aim for the jugular, we’ll all take turns
and it doesn’t matter who started

‘Cuz it’s a vicious world,
gotta learn to play that game
Who can we chew up and spit out today?
It doesn’t matter where we aim that pain,
as long as you know how to play

The rules will apply,
as rumors run rampant,
in the game of, ‘what can we start?
Now load your guns, and check your ammo,
we’ll blow those bastards apart!

And we have no shame,
we just mow ‘em down,
we’ll take no prisoners and run
We can step over their bodies,
while trashing their names

But of course, it’s all done in fun!

So come one, come all
take your aim and best shot,
let’s see your talent for wounding a soul
Come on, come on, let’s see what you’ve got
let’s see who you run with and know!

Yes, it’s a vicious world,
and a damned rough game
It’s dog eat dog as they say,
But if you want to survive,
to stay on top…

Then you’d better
learn how to play

awh @ 2007

Amerika Idolizes

Across the nation
Worshipers on
Bended knees
Heads bowed
In adoration before
32” Flat screen
Neon bright a
Shining light
In the dark
Marbleized eyes
Blazing from
Faces split by
KFC slick smiles
As a new
Messiah is
And created
Specifically to
Please and
Appease the
of the masses

On your knees Amerika!
A new Idol is born.

Awh @ may 2009

Wind Up Doll

Pull me from
That dusty shelf
Wind me up
And watch me go

A song and dance
For your pleasure
Your own little
In action

Yes sir! That’s Me!
Your own personal pocket pal!

Occupying you
For the moment
Killing a little time
In your life

But don’t wind too hard
My batteries aren’t charged
And I can be worn down
If I’m over-wound ….

And you'll no longer have
Your wind up doll~

Awh @2008

Cat 5 Alicia

There’s a storm blowing thru
my ravenous soul tonight
relentlessly whipping the winds
of my personal war around me
with the velocity, the ferocity
of a category five hurricane

Harsh furies agitate my sober atmosphere
with the momentum of a bullet train;
menacing to the fragile sanities
being torn from me and ferried out of reach

In righteous wrath and fear,
I raise my fist violently against this turbulent chaos
funneling, channeling the vicious dark spirits
seeking refuge in my core,
the eye of my storm--
this angry ocean of impurity pulling me out to sea,
leaving me washed away lost
in the waves of madness and despair

Battle weary with my rationale threatened,
my voice a howling fury indignant against
the forces ripping away the last precious
threads of my sanity,
the violence wreaking havoc on the wastelands
of my sorrowful, desperate excesses,
I capitulate, swallowing my demons down

Hurricane Alicia abated, my spirit sedated,
I lie hypnotic and calm,
flat lining in the seas of tranquility

Patiently waiting for the next tempest,
I lie dormant and calm in the eye of my storm

©awh july 2007


I lie quietly watching you slowly advance
to your place of worship, driven by
your vocation, your quest for meditation,
zealous redemption of your faith

With no hesitation, reservation
or doubt, you kneel at my alter,
head bowed, sipping of my warm wine

Taste my consecrated flesh,
Oh, sweet sacrament

Slip into my feminine sanctum,
we’ll meet in blessed communion,
professing our sins in beatified union

Reach with me our heavenly rapture,
your lips divine, warm and sweet on mine

We will lie spent, completed,
contented, languid, liquid salvation,
in our confessional

awh @ 2008

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I am pleased to Alicia Winski has been named the Featured Writer for the Winter Issue of Record Magazine. Please check out her work on the site and in the upcoming print issue. She has a great future ahead of her as a poet and a writer!

Godfrey Logan
Creator/Editor Record Magazine
Hi. I found you in the Poets Market. Took a look at the blogspot thing but didn't really see any kind of reference to a magazine. Are you still taking submissions? If so, I'd love to submit. I liked quite a bit of what I read on the blog.

Looking forward to hearing from you.


Alicia Winski


Old lace

Fine wine

Brushed silk

The world mine

Life simply sweet

No cares or


No deeper meanings

Unpleasant revelations

A time of few trials

Little discontent

When I dreamt my

Girlish dreams

And I knew

What love meant...

Now with dreams


My hourglass lay


In shards

Around my feet


With the


Sands of time

While the

Soft ashes

Of my lost


Swirl gently

Around me

Like feathers


In the wind...

Little Red Riding Hood

I can see your eyes

Watching me

Where ever I go





Covetous and


…so frightening…

I can feel the heat

From your fingers

Aching to

Touch me

Break me

Teeth sharpened

Read to devour

And take me

Swallowing me


Your Lips licked in

Lusty satisfaction

Gorged and plumped

With the extraction

Of the last vestige

Of privacy and

Innocence I

Held onto

Brutally ripped

From me

The fragile emotional


I had retained



Untouched now


Soiled by the

Impurity of



My blood runs cold feeling

Your lustful need

The avaricious greed

To feed on me



In the air around me

The main dish for your

Solitary table….

Will you eat me whole

Or slice me up into

Bite sized pieces

Tender morsels

Sinfully flavored to

Savor at your leisure?

With nowhere to hide

I crawl inside myself

A frightened little girl

Hoping not to be seen

A Little Red Riding Hood

Trembling in fear

From the big bad wolf

Knowing that he’s

Not just near but

Arrived and

Here knocking…

…at my door…
Mr. Wilson was BORN IN 1941 IN Ithaca, New York and was raised in the Finger Lakes
Region of upstate New York. He was employed by the Traveler’s Insurance Company for 27 years from 1967 to 1994.He retired in 1994 and became disabled with his diabetes and heart conditions. He continues to live in Vernon, CT .In 1989 to 1991 he had 65 poems published in various publications. His poems are drawn from his own life’s experiences. He presents rich images through the strong and interesting use of his poetic vocabulary and language. He has continued his poetry
to the present and is proud to be a poet of two centuries. He encourages others to keep poetry alive. In 2009 Mr. Wilson has had poems accepted for publication by:
Westward Quarterly, Cloud Appreciation Society, Nomad’s Choir, The Poet’s Art
Star*Line , Write On.!!, She-mom (A Brilliant) Record. Ceremony and Fullosia,

James Webb Wilson

The Film Ran in Reverse

The film ran in reverse

We saw the combine put wheat in the field

We saw the old barn falling together

We saw the cat jump up on a large post

We saw the catcher pitch the ball to the pitcher

We saw a log sawed and chopped

Reassemble itself back on the wood pile

We saw the end throw the football

Over his shoulder to the quarterback

We saw jet planes in weird retrograde

A diver came out of the water arcing

Up to land feet first on the spring board

Rabbits and squirrels in reverse

Going where they’ve always been

Then when my Dad backed up the car

It looked oddly normal

Two reversals made it right

In Their Own time Defined

We walk along a time line with fashions and fads

Of common products and commercial ads

Novels of the nineties can now refer

To Nintendo, Walkman, CD’s and fake fur

Word processors, lasers and microwave dishes

To cable –HBO, Sports Channels

Query languages – relational data bases

We see the trail of life littered

With the signs of the times

Recycling bins in purposeful hues

Crash diets, the Heimlich maneuvers

Closet doors with slots and louvers

We shall remember these littered time

The fast pace of change

Technology builds in obsolescence

Resale’s, upgrades, to better

Their quota, the market share

We talk the time line

Anachronisms nonverbally defined

Monday, October 19, 2009

James D. Ardis is a poet currently attending the University of Arkansas for Creative Writing. At nineteen years old, he’s already been published over 30 times by journals such as Word Riot, Teen Ink and Subtle Tea. Until the journal’s demise in April of 2008, James D. Ardis had a column in Zine 5 magazine entitled Idle Lines for the Misinformed. He’s currently wrapping up work on his first book of poetry: Letters on Sunspots. James is also helping to establish the first ever literary journal in the history of the University of Arkansas. As an active Buddhist, James’s work includes many references to Buddhist philosophy. Popular culture and the motif of self discovery also pop up constantly in his work.

What is matter? Does it dance?

I challenge every teacher to come up with one question
for every test that goes beyond
notes taken during a lecture…
bolded terms on the sides of textbooks…
a question that goes beyond…
An answer.

What is Matter? Does it Dance?
Do swing sets miss you when you get older?

English Major Woman

Her feet cry out to me for salvation
from the shoes that demand five toes
to converge in a single point.
The proverbial “toe-cleavage” throbbing red
As she mangles her textbooks with bookmarks and ear tags.

She plays Sudoku in the newspaper during Medieval Lit.
fingers bound around a pencil with a brand new eraser
for all the mistakes she's bound to make
as a professor in her late eighties
strings together her final thoughts
before the end of class like an epitaph,
spoken in perfect Iambic Pentameter.

Ferris Wheels In Pripyat

Discontented bumper cars wade in melting snow
thin wires cling to the decimated ceiling,
The grovel gathers along electronic pathways
a steering wheel rests beside the passenger's seat.

The classroom seats are firmly planted on the ground
dirt gathering on the floor like pencil shavings,
A light panel collapses between the aisles
like a student slapped for insubordination

A Ferris wheel plagued with rust, arms bent in exhaustion
letting its fingers,the gondolas, dangle low,
wonders to itself if it could even rotate
if it cared to try.

The 4th of July on November 22nd

A 12-year-old Asian child smokes a cigarette
touching the smuggled fireworks like a holy shrine
the stench of 7-11 Taquitos dances around his friend,
his protruding gut and the sweltering hive of acne sprinkled across his face tell the story of many late night Slurpee binges.

The cold November air, the ying
contrasted by the lit match, yang
collide at the core of the firework's fuse,
the first flints spark like magnets
their tango as passionate as a Latino mamba.

Flying in the air reluctantly on its kamikaze mission,
the crackle like popcorn as the rocket releases its cascade of color,
the calm November evening shattered in calamity
by the rocket's pure, impressive light.

An entire town collectively, leave the warm embrace of blankets
and crave a hot dog drizzled in ketchup.


While her friends pay to get their fingernails painted at stores,
she stays at home and sinks her hand into bowls of red paint
hurling it at the canvas, bombarding the tranquil plain
with sheer passion so it won’t take bottles of Tequila
to see those strawberry fields forever like her idols.

Monday, October 12, 2009

It's Bad, But Not More Than a Private Affair

Showed the Full Monty to "Monty,"
Pants apparently open Worldwide,
Affairs with female staffers, while in committed relationships,
And married - on the side!

Caught with Stephanie, almost half your age,
So smitten with "Smithy," you drove her home,
Sucking face in Haldeman's driveway,
Did you think he would leave that alone?

It takes two to tango,
Like her brother, she liked "dancing" with the stars,
Not a cheap or stupid trick; not "Dutch" to pay for her law school,
And ask her to be your personal attorney after she passed two bars.

The King of Late Night finally,
Well, at least you got a ratings boost,
With Leno gone, probably would have happened anyway,
Extortion, as the way to rule the roost?!

Sexual harassment?, workplace hostility?
Look closer, sly Stephanie was playing a pair,
Two timing, working both sides of the street,
Hedging her bets on a lair and a "royal" spare.

NOW and Gloria Allred entreaties aside,
Until recently, apparently closed, consensual circles - or triangles - of love,
If employees didn't know and jobs were unaffected,
Where's the need to involve legal review from above?

Kudos to you for taking responsibility,
For Harry's sake, I hope you can "fix" things with your wife,
Become her Late Knight and learn a lesson at 62,
When in the public eye, be a better role model in life.

And while Letterman's healing his family,
Instead of feeding our appetite for salacious fare,
Let's look away and not make his misadventures what they are not,
It's bad, but not more than a private affair.

Karen Ann DeLuca

Friday, October 9, 2009

Dear Godfrey
I am an aspiring poet. I have written 77 books of poetry over the past several years and 15 novels; I am new to publishing and am always looking for an audience, I have published 46 poems in a variety of periodicals. I Love to write and offer an experience to the reader. I am a member of The American Poets Society. I hope you enjoy my work.

Ron Koppelberger

Sated Dreams

Against the blazing twilight horizon in passions

Of orchid sashay and rusty erstwhile forevers,

A pulse in the heartfelt redemption

Of currents in cause and desires alight, alive,

Akin to the epic assurance of evermore and a

Star, an invocation in the tinder of sated dreams

And sparrow revelations in black and


Tender Embraces

In embryonic assurances of undisguised love, the

Passionate wills of what is bidden by the saints and

Skies in amber hued prisms of

Existence. The hope of well fed mistresses

And clean cured calm, a pleasure in the serenity

Of tender embraces and eyes in rouge ascension.

Passion and Presence

The ecstasy in fame and strengths

Of wisdom, in purpose and exhibited daze, in dare

And rare wills of repentant troth, in absolute wild,

Sensual abandon and favors of satisfying,

Visible bloom, the purity in sapphire skies and

Twilight fray, the buzz in bones of dusty, desolate

Passion and presence. The seasons in sage arrival

And bidden apple awareness.

Silent Touch

Hyacinth perfections in azure prayers of romance,

In mischief and wild coquette, the passion of tear drop honey

In amber asylums of beauty, existing for the

Love of silent touch

And swathed assurances of devotion,

Wandering by the precious flame

Of yearning hearts.

Sweet Sanctity

Remedies of discovery and vigilance,

An arrow in ascending melancholy

And balanced spectacle,

A trapping in torn vestures of charm,

Descried by the touch of loves sweet sanctity

And passions arrival, the flourishing bond of devoted

Security and care for the ancient arts

Of affection, a tear in gentle waves

Of sufferance and radiant will.

Exhaling Desire

The caress of your tears against my lips

As the world shadows our love and the essence

Of ethereal defiance, sublime temptation to worship

The sustenance of your amber eyes and bonded

Bidden heart, a testimony in rapture

And warm suspiring grace as we share the spaces

Between moments of exhaling


Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, The New Yorker and elsewhere. Family of Man (Pavement Saw Press) is scheduled for Fall 2009. For more information, including his essay “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” and a complete bibliography, please visit his website at <>.

Eight months your heart
that blinking flag
mountaineers still carry to the sun
-you came down
with only a crib sheet
folded around the light

-it’s enough! The air
ignites, cries out
pours down your bones
gutting your throat.
You drink maps
waiting for a name

named Eight.
The July you couldn’t find
looms in front
covered with snow -Eight

just born and your heart
one month short
rises as each morning the sun
somehow must be carried down
tiptoe, asleep on its side

and the July you couldn’t climb
will always be too dry, too hot
your skin burn out
-a druggist walks past
wraps something for shade
and inside the jar you hear that fire
folding around your name.

July. The highest month
lost, climbing to claim the sun
without you, step by step
like a small breath
tossing among the snowflakes
or the beautiful shadow from your heart.

The mirror a convict holds out
and between two bars
sees the long, steel corridor :the sun

aches too, hunting down the light
that escapes each evening, hides
a few hours, a few clouds, the cold
the lifetime -what did you expect

holding out your hand
as a dorsal fin will deflect
and everything swerves to the floor
-I’m drowning
so close to your lips

and my heart held out
still looks down the hall
the dust covered breasts
no longer thirsty for lips
or hands almost on fire

-a small mirror shares my room
with an electric switch
with light that kills on the spot

and what did you expect
holding out the sun
till it finds a window
covered with frost
and how the curtain warmed your shoulders
and kisses and yes, birds and oceans too
are hiding somewhere from my arms.

The plumage in this narwhal’s side
lifts as every birth tangled in water
bleeds from a place it’s not wanted
-one feather left
splashing and splashing, the sea
dead, drifting, all these waves
torn from one gill

-night after night a breath
so huge in my chest
and the Earth rolling on its side
bloated with air and pain.
Choking almost helps.

I carry this enormous breath
back to its sea, its silt again
then rise into moonlight :tides
trying to revive these waves
as if underneath all wings
there are no roots and water now

weighs less: the whale
tumbles each night closer
circling to gather speed
and its blood
as streams will wither
on the mountain inside

-in this darkness
everything is red :the moon
floating away or I cough
or walk like a sunrise

-again that birth: the sky
chased from my side and emptying.

The cots, the stove, the crew
unclaimed in this Nissen hut :my mailbox
between twelve more :a camp
ditched, the road too narrow, curved
from rain and letters home, tissue thin
too weak to lift my lips, my slow
wide, rippling sweep
crumpled to tin, its great arc
now eyes and claws and thirst, the flag
soaked in blood, waving where it fell.

People I don't know send letters
promising to lose. I've already won!
A SOUTHERN CAPE FOR TWO that couldn't wait
printed on the envelope --my hangar's

full. Too many capitals and these stamps
each day heavier :monuments
defaced the first time up
tenacious as fly paper

--I can't separate the mail
just by calling out, every name
sounds as if mine at some briefing
we agreed the last one left
a prize that sounded more like laughter

--the letters too heavy now :a heap
as clouds still gather each evening red
--the last carrying their dead
to the pile: every sky

waiting on my table to be sent home
as a flower reaching into the world
or letters with my name outside.

No hardhat and this stubborn doctor
too close, my heart
battering his head --his timid fingers
knocking to unearth from my chest
the great cave, the fire that listens

for flesh --he collects and keeps a chart
slants is pencil-thin light
writes on my eyes
something I want forgotten

--without a rope, the light
lowered through my throat.
He says my breath is still in place
warm from human sacrifice.
He asks how old I am

and my heart by milliliters
is carried off on a tray
as if a wince could tell
what blood was like in ancient times

the blood that always saw me naked
the blood long before the Earth
began to beat :the avalanche
still gushing out my arms
my colors and perfumes.

This doctor's used to snapping nerves
with pointed hammers and whisk brooms
--he digs bareheaded, uncovers
the murmur stone by stone :so many deaths
for one brief grave :my heart
as sometimes an old school song
and the soft drizzle that was a name
before his cold fingers, the fierce cough
he tells me to try.

Helpless I do not know if good intentions prevail among the elected, among the appointed, leaving me apprehensive that the fate ...