Posts for June 16, 2015

Erin Mathews

Dead Artist’s Daughter

I’m sorry

Because it’s not fair
to be signed up
as living exhibit
against your will.

Pat Owen

The House of the Forester

The House of the Forester

Plain, bare bones male energy,
nothing there but the basics–
no pillows, no art work, no softness–
furniture drab, floors tile–
walls empty.
Spartan, utilitarian, unadorned–
the colors brown
surfaces hard.

Bronson O'Quinn

he wants a tye-dyed t-shirt

from his Uncle’s hippy days,
when they smoked pot
like cigarettes
and grew corn
that you could eat
straight off the stalk

Len Lundh

The Missing Are With Us Always

In the night-lonely diners, I heard a voice.
Can you stop it, the missing?
            The missing that sneaks up
            behind you with soft breathing?

And I responded, Yes, of course.
By not being born, or else by dying
            before your heart makes attachments.
And what hours you have will be empty. 

Standing at the gravesides, they asked me.
How do you forget the missed ones
            that tap on your shoulder and slide
            out of sight when you turn your head? 

And I told them as the clods fell, Easy.
Give your life to someone immortal,
            to something time will not destroy.
And they’ll still be in the corner of your eye. 

Waking in the morning, their tears begged,
How do we appease these ghosts
            that come to talk to us in our dreams
            after dancing at the foot of sleep? 

And I answered, Let your tears come free
Then tell your children all your memories,
            and teach them to tell their children.
Make your thoughts of the missing glad tales.



A Poem of Love

Poem 16, June 16


A Poem of Love


A poem of love must be bolder

like the poet letting go in Solomon’s Song,

less play on words than cummings sought,

word more expressive than I loved you first.


A poem of love should be free of Eden’s thirst,

boundless in a heart versed in there ought

to be a defining, a feel right up close; no wrong

reflection in the eyes of its beholder.


A poem of love needs not say anything;

yet, speak silent like a quivering chin,

like a young bird’s first flying,

no fear of failing nor landing’s pain.


A poem of love is more of that sting

of trying, less of where have you been?

more of living than dying,

& just as welcome as cool rain


on hot flesh in times of drought.





Carole Johnston


on the corner
Midnight Butterfly Jack
his sign says
“homeless and hungry” I 
give him a handful of stars

Gaby Bedetti

This Land Is Your Land, This Land Is My Land

I stopped last night to enjoy a duo play “On the Banks of the Ohio”
across from the Belle of Louisville. The banjo player sang beautiful harmony.
I added my voice to their next song, Woody Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land.”

This morning, on my break from reading English Lit essays
I noticed two cats in harness and leash
on a stone bench in front of the Convention Center.
Next to them, Jeremy from North Carolina sat cross-legged.
KJ, I learned, was abandoned by an owner in California;
Salem was a feral cat from Mississippi—some company for KJ.
As I turned to go inside, Jeremy leaned over and kissed KJ.

I looked for Jeremy on my lunch break. He was still there.
He mentioned that the police had ticketed him.
While someone asked him about the cats,
I put a $5 bill in a discreet metal cup next to KJ and Salem.
Jeremy offered me his story—how he’d left home at sixteen, and is now thirty-seven,
how he had picked up what looked to be a kid’s bike at the armory,
how when he travels by plane, the cats lie quietly in an athletic bag.
Sometimes he hitchhikes. For a while he worked for the circus.
I wondered if any of what he said was true—
and then I decided his whole life was true.
That’s how he got his teeth knocked out, he said,
pitching tents.
After lunch I brought him coffee and a baked apple.
I don’t know if he remembered me and the cats looked weary.
But I wanted to know why he became a traveler. “Good question,” he said,
adding, “the adventure, I guess. I think I’ll stay in Louisville for a while now.”
I never introduced myself, and he asked nothing of me.
I shook his hand, slipped into the building,
and washed mine.