Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.


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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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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