November 17, 2006

grounded fireflies are little stars that are dying


Nigel Cooke, The Painter On His Way To Work 2005, oil on canvas

Sudden Opera
-- by Frank Stanford

In Arkansas the liquor costs
The wind lifts a finger
And that is all

You look over your shoulder
When you have a chance
Your bottle is empty

If I could go somewhere
I would go
where the music doesn't have knuckles
And the dancers don't wear boots

I'll never leave here
The creeks are so cold and solo

My tie-rack is a convent
The pool hall is closed

When It's After Dark
-- by Frank Stanford

I steal
all the light bulbs
and hide them like eggs
in a basket
going to some outlaw
I put on the best l can find
I cover them with a swatch
of something
that swells like a bite
that bleeds green
cloth that smells
of a feed store
but looks
to of been worn
I go over to nasty willy's bridge
and throw them into the creek
there in the shade I listen
for them
to make nests
to escape
agony and burst

The Last Dance
-- by Frank Stanford

after Jean Follain

Save it for me
they ask you
or you asked them
what difference does it make
some guy from college
always forks over
a couple
extra bucks to the band
a little before twelve
you don't have wheels anyway
and if you still intend
on going
to school next fall
you've got to be on the gym floor
with a broom at midnight
helping clean
broken glass and flowers

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