Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Halloween / Autumn

The Game of Whisper Down the Lane

Listen with your grownup ears. The night may speak to you with silence. The silence of leaves turning. Of a spider’s patience. Silence abiding. The moon shrugs off its silver stole, bright paradigm to let it go— loss, dependence, fear—to take the stars as your guide, the cataclysmic births and deaths, the shy-of-everlasting light, the fatal strength to face the end. We’ve changed since we were children. How many faces […]

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All Hallows

All Hallows   The air smells black, like burnt matches, like candlewicks. The moon a polished silver doorknob. It’s bitter, a chocolate night. We dance along the street like fallen leaves. Whispers spark and snap from hollow trees. We hear a sound like seeds snickering in the dry heart of a gourd, too late sense that some monstrous thing has taken form and comes clattering behind. From dreams I know […]

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Elizabeth

Old Cemetery, Owensville, Ohio I said good morning to her every day on my way to school. The rain-flattened engraving kept a century’s secret, on a headstone leaning after too many Midwestern winters. I pretended to know her: “wife of ______”, though she’d long since sifted down to dust and bones beneath the roots of our village. I invented her tragic death, looked for signs, willed her to haunt me. […]

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Poppet Piracy

The cost of keeping you, my love, is high. Blue candles worn to nubs, raven-throated nights of chanting, vats of honey to swim your name in are the least of it.   To your symbol and substitute, carved poppet, blonde wool wound round waxen neck, I address my prayers and pleas. Each time you falter, your tiny twin, lumpen manikin, assures your return, as long as the levy’s paid.   […]

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