Poetry Issue 14

   Issue # 14 : January - June 2011

Chris Martin

The Owl
The Girl

The Owl

for Alex Lemon

    Durer’s dour
    little owl
    stares strangely down
    from his perch
    on the bathroom wall
    already less here now
    cornering the brain in waves
    whose peaks and dips duly
    fritz a garish cough of feathers
    into the corpse-light morning air
    that my piss has tricked
    cacophonous yellow diving free this
    is what they mean
    reproaching solemnity in fits
    of strange glee
    or crushing dissatisfaction
    into breathable
    red powders
    we spiraled outward
    left the city
    took part-time work
    freaking the ancient wood
    into gusts of ion readiness
    I brought you this owl
    in case you needed each other
    dawning negative at newly liminal cusps
    is that what you mean
    about god arriving in seizure
    his horses just horses
    baroque relentless and electrical
    to hoove through
    the body’s flummox
    I’m always
    this pregnant
    with everyone’s child
    unruly gut sprung
    into tendrils of unknowing
    most are thrill offenders
    but I’m stuck here programming
    flowers as another war arrives

The Girl

for Andrea Arnold

    Night grass’s
    fast twinkles
    threatens to collapse
    the wet eye
    as it shivers over
    a girl’s bloody nose
    just off the English highway
    it’s strange to us both
    how our skin never actually touches
    except through the congress of magnetism
    but does it constitute form
    in the way language does?
    I left the movie
    feeling emptied by resilience
    a brilliant emptiness
    like returning home
    at night
    from some
    simple day’s journey
    but does home
    constitute form or magnetism?
    I left the house
    because it felt like form
    was taking over each room
    and this life made of stanzas
    this little song I made swerving
    through them and the night
    was more about the girl
    crying by the English highway
    with the twinkling grass
    than it could ever
    be about me
    the cat purring
    and biting
    the buttons
    off my shirt
    an old mobile
    of drowsy paper owls
    now alert and watchful
    over the cramped living room
    which is filling with words
    as fast as you read them