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Lexington Poetry Month
Daily Lizard
Simon Boes

The lizard I saw
On the way to my school’s library
Was still there on when I left the building

I bent my knees to touch it
But withdrew to imagine
My emotion after it would run away
So I kept walking
Knowing it might not be there tomorrow

Song in Key of D

Self-righteous shoes  

D G                        A7                            D
  I hear uplifted men need special shoes   
G                                A7                           G
to walk upon this earth like you and I.

D       G                   A7                                    D
Their trouble is they cannot shake the blues.           

G                                           A7                         D
When they’re unhappy, they want us to cry.  

Don’t step on me with your self-righteous shoes.
Don’t step on me with your self-righteous shoes.
Don’t tread on me with your self-righteous shoes.
Take time to walk a while within my shoes.    

Men too ashamed to say that they are walking…
Men too afraid to stop and talk with you…
Men showing no regard for others talking…
They step on us with their self-righteous shoes.    

Now I’m a man who wears out both his shoes,
walking here and there to take a stand…
I may not gain as much as I will lose,
but I can lend a friend a helping hand.  

I’m not ashamed to stay- afraid to leave.
I’m not above a sacrifice for me.
I know the things that pull upon my sleeve,
and new self-righteous shoes can’t set me free.  

I’m not ashamed to say I’ve done my walking.
I’m not afraid to stop and talk with you.
But please show some regard when we are talking.
Don’t step on me with your self-righteous shoes.

Here You Are
Rae Cobbs

Her doors and windows open on this day,
she would clean her house. Maybe she would call,
meet us at a coffee shop–but she’d bring hers, bought
at the convenience store, three sugars, cream, at least
two espresso shots. She would ignore the pain
in her gut, her leg, grateful for her chance at life.
She leaves it all to us, her essays and her cherished art,
her laugh, her sturdy “Thank you!” when we spoke the truth.
None of it’s diminished by the scattering of death.

There is a creature, black as she was ebony,
exploring my hand. I can’t feel its weight,
its steps. It flies. I’ve never seen that kind before.
And Jackie: I may never see her energy again,
the weariness she bore with the unthinking
of our lives. She had an appetite for treasure
that always brought her home. She’d shout applause,
curse anyone who crossed her, and lived to spite
the enemies she perceived. She was angry,
harsh with critics, dedicated, strong.
She carried Jesus. Good luck, Heaven.
You’re so full you’re slipping love.

Letters from Home
Pamela Gibbs Hirschler

Phone calls were always initiated by daddy—
his preacher voice clear across the wires.
Sometimes mother would go to the bedroom,
pick up, and listen on the extension.

But the letters that woman could write,
spinning a narrative of canned tomatoes,
a rat snake curled up the screen door,
a fox on the carport.

We always knew the real reason
she wrote was to elicit a response. 
A letter just took a twenty-cent stamp,
but I was drowning.

I knew she waited every day,
for news of first words, how the youngest
fell asleep in a pile of stuffed animals,
or the oldest learned to swim.

Now I close my eyes,
see her clearly.  She waits
in the front yard, patiently,
for the postman.

things mosquitoes and christians are obsessed with. a list poem and a lifelong scientific study.
tina andry

type o
chanel #5
black clothes
ad infinitum

#9683FF ( 150, 131, 255)
HB Elam

wilted in place, the petals drooped
dried out by the midday sun falling
on the north east corner of my desk

they were leftovers from a retirement
party, big blooms of hydrangea, and other
white flowers, with small spurts of placed purple
in celebratory arrangement
of achievement;
apparently no one told them of floriography
and the meaning of heartlessness

but, regardless of what it means,
or meant,
they came to rest in my workspace
days after the party
for reasons unknown
and for different unknown reasons
I had objected, ultimately relenting,
when a coworker brought them in

over two days though I had become accustomed
to the sight of the slow decay
slowly browning
wrinkles shriveling over the surface
of sex organs and
the faint smell of a florist’s shop
wafting around me

when suddenly as quickly as they came
they went; she came in and said
they were dead
and to be disposed when to me
they still had life left to eke out
in sight
but this time I didn’t object
but thanked her
and returned to work
that went on whether or not they were in
my vicinity

leaving me to think
not about the abundance of white
but the lilac-lavender highlights
and their absence

Biking the Legacy Trail with My Daughter
Gaby Bedetti

The night before, I gauge how fast to go
without risking a fall.

After I dust off my sixty-year-old Schwinn,
troubleshoot the rack, load the bikes,
skip the sunscreen, stick a handkerchief
in my pocket (a makeshift tourniquet,
just in case), we hydrate.
After we discover my girl’s model
won’t sit on the rack,
we locate the lever
that pushes the back seats forward
and hoist my bike inside the trunk.
We adjust our helmets,
fill our water bottles,
and drive to the trailhead.
We use the rest rooms at the Y,
note our matching aqua jerseys,
and take off!

The tires whirr and the wind hums
as we breeze up and down slopes
past cone flowers, Queen Anne’s lace,
morning glories, thistle, clover, and fleabane
over the winding Cave Run Creek
further and further out of town
until we cross Iron Works Pike
into the Horse Park.

On the way back past cornfields, construction,
and horse farms, I coast whenever I can.
My daughter’s seat is too high on her brother’s bike.
My bike gears slip. I breathe air into the bottom of my lungs.
We hail a pair of cyclists who say they’ve passed us twice.

We glide back to the parking lot side by side.
And I didn’t fall off.

Tribute to Your Words
Philip Corley

Hard to get to all things desired
in a day, when every day
has been a race to midnight
finding meaningful words to say.

Such beautiful reflections have passed,
can’t possibly read into them all
much less craft my reactions
to tack onto your walls.

All forces of the month considered
both inside me and out,
it’s amazing that I’m still here
celebrating what we’re about.

I haven’t spoken to you
nearly as much as I should
nor thanked you enough
but a tribute if I could?

All these souls I see
sharing wide open windows,
there is beauty all over,
the meaning of life, in us, shows.

Your bravery, your talent,
willingness to share your gifts
forms a modern scripture of life,
the struggling heart, it lifts.

For all these thousands of words
contain infinitely more secrets to find
in continued returns to this place
to enrich our mind

while continually growing
our majestic community
and giving rise
to new opportunities.

Thank you, all of you.
I wish I could have said more
but truly, you have said it all and I
can’t wait to see what the future stores.

Where Does A Thought Go?
Chuck Clenney

Memories permeate the periphery within:
Explosions of experience,
Patch worked and rugged;
Penultimate thoughts come and go as they please. 

Out, ideas spread like pollen from
Baby flowers, blasting bizarre powers.
Anther to Stigma, external reflection finds 
An Ovum to divide and thrive. 

A fertilized reciprocity. 

A Ten Minute Tune Through the Mountain Highway; Take Two
T.D. Worthington

At 70 miles per hour in cruise control

you can hear it

A song the world plays all around you

there’s something to be understood
about the feeling you have
as you tap your feet
to a tune you’ve never heard until now
traveling through a land
you may never have any reason to see again

As the fog in the valleys below
slowly drifts away
let the next song pull you in
as the morning haze says it’s farewell
as the sunlight blows the dust off of the morning sky