September 1997

I asked sleep for a few favors.
So a lightbulb became
the sun’s sojourn;
a notebook, the expectant grass;
a crayon, the watering pot;
a scrawl, the gathering dusk;
a train horn, the private night.

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The Mock Orange at Night in Mid-July

Out of flower now,
yet I smell it and so
must the dogs who
know where the cardinal
was at noon and the red squirrel.
Who knows which
trace is truest –

this one as if someone took
a torch to pearled sugar,
crust on custard,
almost too sweet.
We, or at least I, rely
certain in seeing.
The moon is a firefly
in the pine, a silver flash
above the greenish
flare of beetles.

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How Deceptive The Moon

Night air carries superstition, poison’s veil,
cry of hunting owl, unbound mastiff.
Deceit manages the moon.
Dire blaze of comets fall
whips at cries of disembodied voices,
chaos of sordid death by border lies.
My reflection is running water,
an impulse through exile’s grasping past
profound as sin and consecration.
Floating in inertia, admiring
ennui through its idling passage,
I cup my hands to my mouth, rising
in terror, singing for redemption.

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Convalescent

My body the underside
Of a river at night, dark blue water
Strewn with a pinch of stars.
All is quiet now that I’ve lost
The will to fight. All I can conjure up
Is a lonesome silent fish, a gentle splash
Of gold on the face of the moon.
Then all falls backs into the soft,
Watery black. I’m on my back,
And my legs will not move.

All I can do is wait to be reborn.

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Pandora’s Moon

Let’s forget the echoes                                              
of my thirtieth year
for there’s refuge                               
in the night and the moon.
 
Moonlit night                                     
where imagination stretches starward.
Moonlit night                                     
where my name falls off like an autumn leaf.
Moonlit night                                     
where I’m a sapling attune to winter wind.
Moonlit night                                     
where my past hibernates, ant-sized.

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Meteor Shower

Meteor Shower Canvas blackthe eternal oil spill galacticdark matterspeckled waves of crystaldiamond skyruby, emerald, sapphirelightspeedsilent night brightterminal velocityeyes focusstraining in the dark timeas seconds, minutes, eonsstretch galaxiesinto small handsthat even rain cannotfeelfor in feelingwe begin to fallheadlong into nightriding the meteorsof our pastknowing the showersof our futurewill smotherthose small handssomeday Mark Hammerschick writes poetry and […]

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Night, Cyan

Night, Cyan Young woman, come and sit with us ghosts of wisdom on the veranda under the shelter of a night sky that is cyan and purple in color. Forget the shadows of his arms Instead feel the darkness of a summer night as crickets in their chorus begin to share with you all the […]

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Signal

Signal I am in the presence of several little listens. Clearing of throat, move the stiff scorpion lodged in the boot of mouth where epiglottis flicks up and down like a broken switch. I cannot ignore the passage of claw from stomach to esophagus. I have a sound— bless the cricket and the kick of […]

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brink and teeter

brink and teeter nominal approach amidst the expected disarray empty vessels side by side softly into the heavy night as blank screens stare back wide and beauty seems beyond reach in the blue darkness of our lost ways all the ways up and more to fall these walls climb my dreams down from mountains the […]

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End-of-August Misgivings of the Old Woman Jealous of the First Grader’s New School Shoes

End-of-August Misgivings of the Old Woman Jealous of the First Grader’s New School Shoes the sign down the road – do not pick blackberries – yellow jackets our final peach pie pits and skins swarming with flies a sketch of bird song in a failing tree broken fence railings dry foxglove seed silent rocks in […]

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