sandra simonds

This Love Poem in Two Parts

was going to say        chrysalis of skin

sinking into “mermaids

leaning on their elbows”  or learning

the aggressiveness of the sea      but I can’t open that agrarian

bulk either.

(attn: stick to the fixed model.)

too bad        the light is a cedar placed quark

in which the clothbadlands


—was better back then   —however crude— the character of C:

   we held each

in a shenandoah scroll.

maybe I’m all the while outside     if that means a

“silkscreen warbling   

in its own circumference of”         gasp

goes the little otter

in her shored up     interior

along the length of the hose I discovered


a burned thumbprint   that adds a zero        to all names ending in e.

Once I Worked with A Man

who wanted to be Garson.

Garson was the boss. Not as if Garson’s

going to buy you lox with those

bagels! So bad he stole Garson’s

tux and wore it when he mowed

the lawn. There’s Garson now beyond

the pond there’s a school of

salmon swimming through the temples.

So, what was Garson like when

he wasn’t drinking he was a big shot

attorney who dated a journalist who

lived in Houston and had red hair

the color of cooked salmon. So bad

he stole his car when Garson was

out of town he took it to the

peepshow me thinks it was a corvette

and inside an overweight hooker pulling

duct tape off of her inner

thigh and the burnt rubber scent

of tires in the background. I’m tired

of this job. Garson’s a liar and no one

believes his autistic son claims full custody

of said nervous tic. But the man who wants

to be Garson is no idiot and when I bend down

to pick up the scotch tape he stares

in my face, pyrotechnic goes the gaze, saying

you know you always wanted to be Garson.

Bananas and Spiders

Foot ball players are reading Auden, nurses

         are torching the stadium.         tintern roof.                         



Pluto.           Beg you.

Let’s slip away, romantic one.

It’s one in the afternoon and if you aren’t drunk you’re

giving a lecture on

linguistics.   Lecture start here:

                  I would the long day rising

I would the chatterbox’s

rosy complexion (let’s get married)

I would the heave-ho Pacific,

her oysters,

starfish flesh,    

planetary rotation, a box

of raspberry ice.

joseph massey


seth mckelvey