Categories
Poetry

Camping Out & More…

By John Grey

Camping Out

.

The night is the sky mostly.

Trees are one heaped shadow.

The lake’s lost to its shore.

Mountains retreat beyond the eye.

Only high, do shapes remain.

.

My fire gives details to my face

but no one’s here to see.

My sleeping roll

unfolds to its edges

and no further.

Shadow, night, sleep, blackness –

I’m at the rim

of every known dark.

Hunger

Hunger tells you stories

of hot wind across desert,

of sheet lightning,

of trembling guts and empty pockets.

.

When the city noise

is too loud for it to shout over

it keeps the tale going from inside you,

becomes more circumspect,

speaks with a crackle

like an old phonograph record

of a politician giving a speech.

.

Hunger needs an audience

and it always knows where to find you,

under the same overpass,

with the usual cronies,

all green teeth, ratty hair

and breath like gasoline. 

.

Sometimes hunger comes in disguise

as thirst,

and it encourages you

to take a swig from that bottle you found

that could be whiskey,

could even be kerosene.

.

Hunger can sing soft but compelling

in the voice of the one who last

provided you with three meals a day.

That’s years ago now.

Hunger has no memory

but it assumes that you do.

Death Valley

.

Sand abbreviates a ghost town’s story,

shutters the mine,

buries the roads leading in and out.

.

A lesser history gives birth to saltbush,

No trees. No shadows. 

The sun’s advance is unstoppable.

.

Grainy wind

blows from the west

Dust devils dance

on rocky floor.

That’s it for movement.

.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Soundings East, Dalhousie Review and Connecticut River Review. Latest book, “Leaves On Pages” is available through Amazon.

.

PLEASE NOTE: ARTICLES CAN ONLY BE REPRODUCED IN OTHER SITES WITH DUE ACKNOWLEDGEMENT TO BORDERLESS JOURNAL. 

Categories
Poetry

Giants and more…

By John Grey

Giants

The elephant enclosure

is dotted with heaps of hay.

Three giant gray thirty-somethings

jolt each other softly,

as trunkfuls of feed

are packed into open mouths.

A crowd gathers behind a fence,

watches these gentle behemoths

fills their massive bodies.

.

A sign nailed to a post

gives Latin name,

location in the wild,

color-codes Loxodonta Africana

as threatened.

Herds and habitat are shrinking.

There’s so little that can live

on such a grand scale.

.

The Law-giver

Shorter days panic

the apples into ripening.

Those that don’t fall

are plucked, fill buckets,

are trafficked from orchard

to ramshackle road-side shack

where scrawled sign and cheap scales

make for a fleeting Autumn store.

.

Bright red Washingtons are traded

for crisp green Washingtons.

A plush, juicy Granny Smith

is sold to a bent, age-smudged Granny Smith.

.

A gray-haired woman holds court

from her ancient lawn-chair,

while noisy children chase dogs

in and out of her legs.

.

A guy in a Buick drives up,

checks through a bushel so fresh,

the smell of the tree is still on their skin.

He scowls at the spots, the bruises.

.

The first law of apples is that

the scruffier the look, the tastier the fruit.

The red-cheeked woman in rumpled dress,

is the law-giver.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in Sin Fronteras, Dalhousie Review and Qwerty with work upcoming in West Trade Review, Willard and Maple and Connecticut River Review.

.

PLEASE NOTE: ARTICLES CAN ONLY BE REPRODUCED IN OTHER SITES WITH DUE ACKNOWLEDGEMENT TO BORDERLESS JOURNAL.