ISSUE  1   2   3  


 5     SUBMIT


Brandon Kreitler


The shotgun shines
      radiant history across the mantle.


The wind rips through a rolodex of the names of the dead.
      It could be a litany, almost
            like the registers of Audubon societies
      and the Who’s Who of West Virginia 1974
            begging for a trumpet in morning,
a waltz and then a nap
      in the hush of a million miraculously lit libraries.


The night before he dreamt of Crystal Pepsi and the Copernican turn,
      post-its mistaken for sonnets
            and ships sailing into shit.

And in waking,
      a waking more this time than a polite not yet to the idea of death,
the atom of speech.
      Not like an old man mumbling to himself in baseball metaphor,
            but like a drop of rain in the palm,
      reminding that above there are stars in the continual ricochet of triangulation,
            bodies positioning themselves
      in relation to a reference for which
            we have no analog.

But one can take comfort in the miscalculation of the heights of see-saw fulcrums,
      a child running around with a gold wrestling belt,
            brave men on Massachusetts quarters,
      Silver State on silver,
            ----------, American.


The wiper does not draw barren Nebraska across the windshield,
      and the merry-go-round children are not about to be
pulled from their fiberglass horses in rapture.

I am acknowledging this.

And yet the story doesn’t end.

An act is a draft for the acts that follow.
      We say forward and pinewood cars fly down their tracks.
After/at and a mother makes the wedding.
      Like a bow.


I haven’t earned this but I’m hitching myself to your kindness.

There is a photo in my living room
on the back of which scribbled are the words
memory is an anachronism.
In the picture a child is
      dragging a stick though the sand
in the vacuum of summer.
      And I am sure that each grain had to pick a side.