From “The February Sonnets 2020”
David tore my last poem into quarters after
I’d read it to the part of America that isn’t David.
I tore up the poem David has yet to send me.
It’s there in the future with my hands dangling
its turncoat. Christina tore her own poem into thirds.
One-third of it was superb. The other two
superber. America is hanging on our every
word. I say “djinn djinn” sometimes when
I want to confuse them out of their hard earned
warlock powder. I’m passing the shop now
where I bought an urn. Tore up this poem.
Burned it in it. Said a dance. The warlock
in that shop is made of brotherly romance.
He tore the tale I told him into myrrh.
I’m trying it out; it’s a very new coat.
Buckle tickle in the park at night, a heave
of glamor on my lap. Lake Placid — now that’s
a little on the nose. Name me an unplacid lake.
Warmth’s an integer of shoulders bent toward rest.
The arc of buttony transverts clouds and land.
This sky’s a little small. Just right. I clutch it
for my button, crush the grit that ridicules its house.
These portals to another mane. I name them “coat.”
Coat of boxy dimes refilling pond. Coat
of silly knives. Coat you fill up with your hungry girth.
I will it mine. Time’s a pretty button on a sill.
I think my birth was really great. Now this enchanted coat.
Gallop with my bolshy friend and drop him in a well.
Everybody has their one balloon and it’s a heart.
Everyone inflates that part. Mylar comes
in many shapes and state allegiances but
everybody’s got a heart balloon.
Everybody’s got a heart balloon and is standing
alone on a corner silent looking morose. Or
maroon? Marooned. Everybody’s face is full
of blood. Pupils dilate when the water looms.
Everybody’s standards hit the floor at 4am, they
say. That may be but no one lets their ribbon loose.
“A corner is two places,” everybody standing on one says.
Stop lights look like stripper poles improved.
Everybody’s got a heart balloon. Just one.
Everybody’s got a soft bassoon inside their gun.
Boog published SEAN COLE’s first chapbook, By the Author, and first perfect-bound book, The December Project. Cole is also the author of Itty City (Pressed Wafer) and One Train (Dusie). His collection After These Messages is forthcoming from Lunar Chandelier Press. His poems have appeared in Court Green, Black Clock, Pavement Saw, and other magazines. In the anthology Starting Today: 100 Poems for Obama’s First 100 Days, his was day 95. Cole is a producer at the public radio show and podcast This American Life.