Tag Archives: lyric poem

Thank you Cellpoems

Really excited to say that my poem has been published as the poem of the week at Cellpoems! Cellpoems is one of my three favorite online publications, along with Rattle and Linebreak, so it’s a real pleasure to be included. If you haven’t yet, check them out, and consider subscribing -as well as publishing online, they deliver a short, exquisite poem once a week via text to subscribers.

Orange

I thought you would make things certain
Like a window nailed shut to the sill.

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Ode to Orange

“It is not, in my view, a very good
novel,” asserted Anthony Burgess, ink-
slinger of A Clockwork Orange, whose pages
pon­tif­i­cate our need for the free­dom to choose
evil. Is there any doubt Tony chose
the wrong wave­length, the wrong
pro­duce? And besides, who wouldn’t,
given a choice, rather read about
Protestantism sewing itself into
Irish flags, an itty-bitty ant trudg­ing around
the rind of a cer­tain cit­rus to demon­strate
the uni­verse is finite and for­ever, ched­dar
man­u­fac­tur­ing, or the manic Orange Bowl
help­ing to end the Depression? Oh, I sing paeans
for marigolds, Titan’s clouds, 10,000 male
Julias released, the insides of man­gos, hum­mocks
cov­ered in daylilies, apri­cot sher­bet
on a Thursday, leaves on their last legs, Kenya—
where they call the color chungwa—on the globe
my Grandpa Guido gave me. Give me
sea pens, zest, cock-of-the-rocks, jack-
o’-lanterns with blaz­ing eyes. Last October, Lisa,
the sar­cas­tic love-of-my-life, got gold­fish
and con­ferred the monikers
“Lime” and “Plum”; the inno­cent things
were belly-up and toilet-bowl
bound the next week. Don’t we give
our pre­cious atten­tions to stuff bend­ing us
blue? And don’t we slump on the sofa, wait­ing out
our lit­tle lives in a world as jaded and bruised
as we can stand it? Well, let my sun­rays mix
with san­guine, let ten times more life taste
like peach meat, let mir­rors reflect and release
that nanome­ter tint to things hold­ing in
that hue like a breath, because the Lord, bored
with cre­ation, bel­lowed “Let there be
orange!” and then there was—filling the sky
that first night, dot­ting trees the third day—
and it was good, so damn good
it could never, thank Heaven, be damned.

-Matt Zambito, Birmingham Poetry Review

Seen from Above

Steady the freight trains
like daily missives
from other-where—

our stop on the map,
the dislocation of winter’s
bandwidth.

Steady now the icicles
freezing in their gravity,
last leaves winnowing

off the tree
and steady the people
with their clocksongs

and filled-up lives
while a few of us are dropping
away like chaff from a scythe.

Emptiness.
Pour the water.
Keep the fire lit.

Things are not as they seem.
To ring the bell
you must give your whole self

over to the bell-rope.
You must lift both feet
off the ground.

-Jennifer K Sweeney, Cave Wall 

Claim – For The Ocean

sea(sea by Shana)

We’re drunk by now
and even then you’re inside your own
head, floating, deciding what to surrender
to and what to leave submerged.
Once, on the island that made
me, the ocean was a ritual
too. I climbed mountains
in an old car in the middle of the night to make
love at its shores, to remember where I had
come from so that it might stay
with me where I was going. That night
the water came up; lapped at our bodies, furious
in the sand. We wept.
We filled
each other’s cups. We put the ocean
to our mouths. We drank.

from “Claim – For the Ocean” by Roger Bonair-Agard, Drunken Boat

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