Poems of the Week – Forthcoming 42 Miles Press Author Allan Peterson


Who speaks for the body? We do.

Every eminence named, each fossa,

eloquent structures of shining bones

as if standing undone on a hill above Urbino,

artists making bright lines in bright sun,

bright language as the bones resurface

after an interim of flesh. Ribs, phalanges,

wings of the sphenoid, shapes named

for what they resemble, scapula a spade.

And how we look lovingly seeing a body

that does not clatter apart, that articulates

without ligaments, that presents in October

poignant reminders begging at our doors.
* originally appeared in Kestral.
Easy Believers

Last night tried to accentuate the stars

by staying darker than usual

the dark of the body inside the body

onyx as Satan’s crows

suggesting it had been touched in places

with a hot wire like a skin

that powders from that same experience

We are easy believers

and it takes only some voice of authority

to say inside the body

is none of our business if organs shift positions

at night and a cure is to drink

nettle from a church bell or that to survive curses

a mandrake must be uprooted

by a black dog on a rope then struck dead
* originally appeared in The Gettysburg Review.
Hard Times

Thanksgiving and transient asters

of north wind bloom on aluminum

as sea gulls plunder mergansers

I had been watching accidentals

and the wood that turns liquid

and the anxious copper-covered wren

Machinery is no metaphor for this

nor scapula nor a trace of chains

In hard times we simply acknowledge

each relentless hour has sixty teeth
* originally appeared in Right Hand Pointing.

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