Simon Perchik


With just one heart and so many nights
you mistake this cane for a camera
that stopped one foot from walking away

reminded it to end the wave goodbye
as if the trigger and flash that followed
were no longer moving –what you hear

is your hand clinging to this photograph
the way a map unfolds on a wall
to memorize how loose the corners are

–you limp as if the cane was adjusted
for distances, is carried too close
tries to remember what happened to it.


The hand that is too heavy
once lifted planes, suns
now wears a glove to a bed

that knows all about darkness
and the emptiness waiting inside
where your feebleminded fingertips

no longer can fold in
then yank as if a sheet
would open and just this hand

make its descent side by side
the warmth smelling from breasts
and afternoons spreading out

though now their sunlight
circles the Earth as ashes
–you pack this glove each night

the way a brace is locked in place
to hold on, take root
without air and now you.

Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Forge, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker and elsewhere. His most recent collection is The Gibson Poems (Cholla Needles Arts & Literary Library, 2019). For more information including free e-books and his essay “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website at
To view one of his interviews please follow this link:



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