Simon Perchik



It must be new here

still damp, its moss

bristling—the nurse


says wear a gown

and from the cold

a stone pulls loose


not yet accused, its heart

already soaked, smells

from some sea


not named yet

—just born

who never again in my arms


a breathing

so filled with tears

—I could have named my arms


Benjamin—I fake a name

call these clouds Clouds

name this new stone Benjamin


and I am never without a child

holding my hand

surrounded by darkness and ice.



While the sun spreading out

in the light from your shirt

wrung dry, its cuffs rolled back


—shores are born this way

reaching around, even here

its sleeves are still visible


and in your eyes

that first emptiness

in all directions at once :light


takes forever now

looks for you as if it

was once the only color


and nothing to end the silence

the way each night the galaxies

gather up the darkness


begin the world again

and each morning

rests at the edge, half listening


in the open

pulling it nearer, loose

and in your arms at last.


Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, The New Yorker, and elsewhere. For more information, including his essay "Magic, Illusion and Other Realities" and a complete bibliography, please visit his website at




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