Autumn Chronograph: 22
Some whiskey to square-up the shoulders,
you have stiff-vowed to oil paint your way
to the month that rough-hardens you for what
is to come: October... blue jean storm skies.
Artery blood... hell-roads... sweet solitude!
Autumn Chronograph: 21
Dry-green timber flames-up to sparse clouds not fifty
miles otherward from your tilt. You find your bottle-
thirsty self in the wrong bar: loiter-ditch young women...
penciled eyebrows, boob tattoos of emergency room faces.
To them you are no more than old age bone-scars.
Autumn Chronograph: 19
Too-narrow-to-turn nothingness roads
within copper-glow of a coke-colored
sinking sun: oh to belt out a love song
at one's own funeral! The miles we log
should be for love and lust, pink panties.
Autumn Chronograph: 18
Disguised as a recent rise 'n shiner
from ancient mud, you take the downhill
path to a friend's home, jabber about scribbles
on marbled paper. Or it's a fever dream after dragging
pine boughs and branches to a fence line burn pile.
Barbara Brinson Curiel teaches in the departments of Critical Race, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and English at Humboldt State University. She is the author of Speak to Me From Dreams, a collection of poems. Curiel is a Fellow of CantoMundo, a national organization for Latino poets.
Adrian C. Louis has published eleven books of poetry, including the recently released collection, Savage Sunsets. His novel Skins was made into a feature film. Louis teaches English at Minnesota State University in Marshall.
Red Shuttleworth's latest play, High Plains Fandango, was produced this past February by State University of New York at Fredonia. He is the author of two poetry books, Western Settings and Johnny Ringo, and over two dozen poetry chapbooks.
Before the Antique Milky Way Vanishes
Now light years into my anecdotage,
the path is confected from the breath of angels...
off-season ghosts in Old West towns,
moonlight on tea cups in shuttered souvenir shops.
Somewhere a man cardiac-lurches from his gas mower,
leaves window light to glare on crystal-green grass.
Somewhere a woman stares up at a hoaxy smile
on a billboard, pleased with stolen motel towels.
Hubble will soon teach us we live on a mirror-flat
heart-shaped cosmos, dotted with full lipsticked lips...
frigid kisses here and hotter-'n-fire kisses there.
My spastic throwing hand grips eternity's doorknob.