Day: November 30, 2022

Poems by D. R. James

Cement Garden

It’s spring again, silvery buds on branches,
the garden violent with hydrangea sticks.
Grandma has wandered to her front-porch chair.
There, her toes barely touch the floor, her gown
screens her sighing knees, her newspaper masks
sink and cupboard undulating behind
her eyes. Apology’s necessary—
this is not her style: beyond the gate flash
lime and lemon groves along steep park lanes,
their peeled bone crash-glittering in her sleep.



::dive in anywhere::::go ‘round and ‘round
on pearl or coral::::cross on cobalt::
::stall against the black mass::::the black
slabs that finger under rivers of rose::
::your hazel eyes will search unmirrored the
rings like years::::vibrato’d, banded angles::
::your sparrow childhood will scan for
the far mouth of corn stalks::::inflict patient
waiting before screaming::::scrawls in clay
will cue the silliness of ancient glyphs::
::saplings will bend and sing to the wind::
::darkened leaves will unhem and dawn’s
paradise will shatter, the constellations
of fine lines torn apart for a merciless
afterward waving like harsh flags::
::but then a familiar vermilion will send
autumn’s frost dissolving, diurnal hours
zigzag-falling like freewheeling feathers::
::until tonight ages into its sedate pitch::::those
baffling coils slacken into cool-jazz Taps::::and
you view the horizon glimmered and wobbled::


Flanked by Fallacies

Trepidation carved its corridors toward calm,
tapered—dissolved—defeat, drizzled delicious
consciousness over recalcitrant fate.

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