sun’s steady breaths ink open
the first paragraphs of another day.
shoes crunch across the glass
from a departed car window,
to find direction or peace
while the city rubs its eyes
clear of disbelief.
still reeling from
the morning I left your bed
the Lawrence el arrives.
8:30 southbound, sick, slow train,
full of rails enough to drive it elsewhere
skinned knees two mornings after all
of everything we said,
and the imprint of your unsure arms
still holds me.…
The wind is in the dry leaves all day
It must be someone’s disappearing life.
I heard we can be seen up there,
Minutes after death,
The flickering light of what we will become
Tied to the ghosts of past and passing,
So much like those blue mirages
We find knotted to the sea.
– Seth Jani…
On this path in the city fens
the man walking in front of me
listens too to the geese and jays
reporting their morning news
In a ragged jacket
and filthy chinos he’s steady
on his feet
I watch him study reflections
of reeds and sky in the shallow stream
edged by rocks and debris…
All the time I am that nursery rhyme
the one where all the sisters build themselves with weakness
saying, no, no, you cannot come in
and yet he takes down their houses anyway,
that bad, bad wolf they don’t know
belonged in them before they were themselves,
you see, this is why
they build their homes of weak things;
only straw, only sticks.
As for that third one with the bricks,
she is only acting hard,
she will open the door and invite him in for tea
if he wants some.
– Penney Knightly…
There will have been grief in the home country–
Parents’ long divorce, a grandfather’s slow death.
And among the burials and separations, there will have been
Familiarities and comforts to take leave of, or pack
For travel into Germany. There will have been
The German comforts of punctual trains, kaffee und kuchen,
Weekly flowers in a crackled glass vase,
American Time, and German streets, a marriage.
In Florence at Easter there were bells billowing the air,
And the light laying itself against walls,
Like a lover’s hand resting against the swell of a woman’s hip.
For years after Florence
I dreamt through the streets of an Italian city,
Touching what the light touched, praying.
In Florence I lay my palms against the stones.
– Devon Miller-Duggan…