Airport Protest in a Crumbling America

We march through the airport in cold winds chanting
aluminum fists in the air and when we come home

the Fireball bottle is empty. The chimney is covered
in dust and Johnny has pneumonia for the second time

this year, lungs filled with water but no one else
breathes easily, just tuning into television fills a room

with coughs and silence. We had wings for a minute
but the planes have resumed their spots in the air far

away from the things that hurt. Just gazing down on
wide landscapes of gray plains and small churches

crumbling from the steeples.

 

(originally published in The Courtship of Winds, Summer 2019)

Terminated

Rip the last life-supporting limb off the tree;
no money grows here now, no more sustaining green

glinting the grass, just faces of dead men we never
knew presiding over lives with a capital C,

an initialism for one fewer line stampeding to the future
of individual prosperity. Sprint to the edge of the field;

walk the gravel road until you find another–
sharp rocks now splinter through your soles.

 

(originally published in The Fictional Cafe, Spring 2019)

Pyramids

Whatever myth you have of pyramids,
I want to hear. I can barely untie
apron strings behind my back

let alone move slabs of stone in
desert sand. I want to wake
early and run inside the bursting

triangles of sunlight but when
I start to tell you, I catch myself
already in a lie.

(originally published in Academy of the Heart and Mind, Fall 2020)

Cadey Mercury

my relationship’s been
a dull landscape with volcanoes

walking the surface of insomnia
5 A.M. in bed eyes closed orbiting

my sun her radiance
gently snoring

I often fantasize
another world

gray plains and craters
rock flings bordering

space too shapeless
to call dark

one desire millions
of miles apart

another right here
floating stone sphere

I am cold November
awake and under cover

an eternity to evaluate
my position in gravity

our love
sometimes unwieldy

and always on
the periphery

of shining

 

(originally published in Rune, Spring 2019)

Boneless Wings

Following a trip to Vegas
in August heat, my skin itched
for good. I ended us. No,
you said. We were a done deal.

You would not leave.
We drank juice and vodka
to forget we had ever
talked about forever.

We rode a Lyft to BW3
at 2 P.M. on a Thursday
because a cheap happy hour
is a kind of grim reminder.

We ordered boneless wings at the bar.
The bartender told us ignition is cheap.
Beer stripped us to tender meat
and there was no more steam.

You stepped into the breeze
when you went outside to smoke.
We locked ourselves out–
the clouds produced rain, not keys.

(originally published in Hedge Apple, Spring 2019)

Autumns by the Ocean

over dark beds of leaves
twigs and string I was full
of hope and hoping there
a remnant of vacation
a connection to the sea
perhaps the nerves
lost singing
through the night I walked
alone on sand the
dogs came barking
from the Atlantic
drenched and draped
in seaweed and I thought
of familiar love how
unbroken longing forever
intertwines in the bending
gravity of the moon

 

(originally published in Plum Tree Tavern, Spring 2019)