I have a
neighbor whose flexible pearls of wisdom
dumb me down.
The patient mirrors of his seeded dreams
have a reason
when I’m listening, but every flower breaks new ground,
evening lies down. That’s one thing. Another has been gone since
started, the more patient neighbor. A rumor, she was killed by a wall
continue being a wall. It fell with patient deliberate ease,
accident. There’s something beautiful about it
me like the repetitively mottled lunatic ecstasy of
early spring. Like unseasonal harvests of attractive hornets.
eggshells to the chickens. There are sailors born
independent ocean who have never known this land. They seem
to be waiting
for someone among us where night is still snow
differently every evening, like gently approaching shadow-brides.
We keep them
in the snow room, call it Dementia and set it apart.
We put such
experience in pills and keep the pills close. We do not take the pills
because Dementia is angry. Her mother does lots of bad things
and is buried
beside the parking lot. There is no building for the parking lot,
but you can smell the guilty cabbage, the damp necessary invitations of
Rich Ives lives on Camano Island in Puget Sound. He has received grants and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, Artist Trust, Seattle Arts Commission and the Coordinating Council of Literary Magazines for his work in poetry, fiction, editing, publishing, translation and photography. His writing has appeared in Verse, North American Review, Dublin Quarterly, Massachusetts Review, Northwest Review, Quarterly West, Iowa Review, Poetry Northwest, Virginia Quarterly Review, Fiction Daily, and many more. He is a winner of the Francis Locke Memorial Poetry Award from Bitter Oleander and has been nominated twice for the Best of the Web, three times for Best of the Net and six times for The Pushcart Prize. He is the 2012 winner of the Creative Nonfiction Prize from Thin Air Magazine. Tunneling to the Moon, a book of days with a work for each day of the year, is available from Silenced Press; Sharpen, a fiction chapbook, is available form Newer York Press, and Light from a Small Brown Bird, a book of poems, is available from Bitter Oleander Press. He is also the winner of the What Books Press Fiction Competition, and his story collection, The Balloon Containing the Water Containing the Narrative Begins Leaking, is now available.