Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Skip Fox

approaching storm

dead leaves, some the color of cement if cement were
rust, scrape my knees on their way to the grave, buried
in gravity, the maple still full and maple leaves soft as
spring, drops begin their pattern on the pond, leaf rustle
hath a new inflection, foliate, smallest sunfish leap, dace
shimmer, scurry to every edge where arcs lap, cross, fade
back into pond, there is no pause, can be no interruption,
below words is sound, beneath sound, silence, then dark
cacophonies of need, a river, swells, above sound are the
sounds creatures make to each other by which they are
known, above these song, all this winding its way into
winter, time's valance most acute in the fall, you're over-
taken again, there's nowhere to go except in, to listen as
Babels of rain sweep across the roof in a darkening room

burial of caves

Saint-Saëns saw a sea in his sleep. Dropped in a key.
Since he'd visited a zoo only that day (trying to win the
favors of one slight puff, some thirty years his junior),
his dream threw up the stuff of tigers, a twirling crock,
one bird's full throated, Barely dying yet, boss, crest stiff
in morning, rigor of the quick (she stirs?) music is always
right in middle of (definitely indefinite), where surface
turns, blinks, swirls with what's moving to edges (like-
wise indefinite), always (if listening).That is, sweet caves
she had & all her caves gave way to caverns, each a life
renewed, a site in which to bathe existence in the waters
of her oblivion. Saint-Saëns forgot all about the animals,
& his music disappeared into night sky, into ranges of her
hair, the soft light of her eyes, & into all her tangled being.

Skip Fox has published several books of poetry: For To (Potes & Poets), At That (Ahadada), and For To (BlazeVOX). Delta Blues will be published this spring. He teaches the University of Louisiana, Lafayette.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Sean Patrick Hill

The white concern of our sheet

I bought my wife an antique mirror—Blanched glass.
     Crazing frame.

Imagine the tsar's parlor paneled in amber.
     Gold foil, gouache. Fence of iron roses.

Merrill said,
poets choose the words they live by—Spindle, lathe.
     Hammer, linen.
Ghost towns hung in the elms.

I remember weathered waterwheels,
     fulcrums clogged with crushed birds.

My wife says, the flaws give it character.

Clangors of bells as trains leave the yard—
     A band of horses in a canyon of thorns.

Sean Patrick Hill's poems are currently in Exquisite Corpse, elimae, Alba, diode, In Posse Review, Juked, Ditch, and The Corduroy Mtn, and are forthcoming in Willow Springs, New York Quarterly, Copper Nickel, Apocryphal Text, and Quarter After Eight. He is a travel writer, husband, soon-to-be-father and teacher in Portland, Oregon. He graduated with an MA from Portland State University and has had residencies at Montana Artists Refuge, Fishtrap, and the Oregon State University Trillium Project.