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Online almanac of contemporary poetry and prose
The Red Seraph
"And once a six-winged SERAPH red / appeared to me upon a cross-road..." (unknown Pushkin).

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Simon Tertychniy. Residuals

Its early, Saturday sort of morning,
not quite alive, but also not dead yet,
I get out of bed to work on my backstroke,
aching to head back.

What a treat it is to retreat!
Flailing in the air, eager to revert,
almost unhurt, as ever, out of turn,
punctuating, puncturing the unheard,
tugging at what isnt there.
What causes my arrhythmic heart to yearn?

A habitual scatterer of infinite weekend noons,
unburdened by hope, the erstwhile regent of word,
upon my swiveling chair I churn,
currently, an athlete of repose, enrobed
and savoring the rank aroma of the passed by,
scuttled and sipping on soma-mimosa,
few things can be recalled,
the rest again must be contrived
and looking to remember, I wade in outside,
squinting in stark daytime light,
my gestures reminiscent of a rotund tenor
performing Nosferatu at the fair.

With stoic countenance
I roll uphill my heavily dented rhyme,
and out of the corner of my eye
perceive the slack advance of furtive time.

Amber-hued liquid lingers in the alembic,
liquor is still in its still.
As for myself, I strive, years after year,
to find a place where there can be return,
to picture what lays in wait there,
to ask to whom I may concern.

Tinged by the moon-burn, stranded in childhood,
by these blind spots we all shall be defined,
by memorys faint prodding
that militates against the moment
with plangent resonance of branches
striking gutted wood.
Reverberations of a sound mold a mood.
Not knowing what is lost, what can be found?
If not by means of words, can it be understood?

A watch with three internal complications
tocks and clicks, the poets leaky faucet leaks,
incrusted in the habits of my mind,
upholstering the past, I leave present behind.

Words fail when all else fails.
I am listing in pursuit, lukewarm on the trail
of a luminous blot
that sails across the velvet lining
of an eyelid shut.

The spirits pass from the inside of my glass
to my inside
and then I think I know
how every story ends,
where roads tend to go,

whereas memory
is amenable to amendments
if not to amends.

I err and murmur,
mutter and distill
that little is not yet
but much is still.


September 18  November 8, 2013