Pegasus Teaches Unicorn the Value of the Hereafter

            (Pegasus Constellation – Winged Horse)

 

You ask me the difference between Pegasi

and unicorns as embers of fire complete

burned circles four feet in front of our feet.

Our town hankers for a time

when fire and hunger were rare,

when wings or horns were inconsequential,

when hearts waltzed woozy with pixelated promise.

Now wings and horns are all we have. One fantasy

after another. Men lament their learned helplessness.

Women work to recall the struggle to overcome it.

Unicorns all glitter magic until they impale our throats

with singular horns. Shame shows itself as hemorrhage,

detectible only by internal scan. What the world

sees as magic you see as disgrace. A dearth of grace.

Our blood fertilizes our flowers, blooming toward the cloud

cover of heaven. Pegasus uplifts the dead.

Unicorn=death and death and death.

Pegasus=angel on which the soul floats into whisper.

 

Amy Strauss Friedman

Amy Strauss Friedman is the author of the poetry collection The Eggshell Skull Rule (Kelsay Books, 2018) and the chapbook Gathered Bones are Known to Wander (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2016). Amy’s poetry has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net, and her work has appeared in Pleiades, Rust + Moth, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. Her work can be found at amystraussfriedman.com.

Jennifer Pratt-Walter

Patchwork of Alders

Jennifer Pratt-Walter

Jennifer finds great beauty in ordinary things seen in a different or closer way. On any day you may find her stirring pots of poetry, music, gardening, animal care and digital photography. Jennifer is married and has three grown children and a small farm. She is a professional harpist and former RN.

Phillip Sterling

As Much to Speak of Weather

I do not write of my father because he loved me, a truth I have come to believe in for its obviousness—no less obvious that is to say than the way one speaks of rain, its beauty and betrayal. Today’s rain is preemptory, a windless gravitas:  what a speaker of political mindset might refer to as bi-partisan, claiming a democracy of garden and glass. How parental! (How paradoxical, both bound and torn asunder!) To speak of my father’s love, then, is as much to speak of weather as if weather is all there is to speak of. My father—who has since taken his words to the grave—has nonetheless left me with rain, another season’s first chill of rain.

Words Frequently Confused: Historicism, Histrionics

If you don’t know the width of the forest when you enter it, how will you know when you’re on the way out? Or do you mean to settle there, to burrow under the dry root of a defeated tree and stay, an abundance of honeybees and berries nearby, a small clear stream? Haven’t you notified the children already, sold every earthly possession, signed up online for Your Majesty’s benefit? Come on, Columbus, isn’t that the way of forests? Aren’t you lost before you know it? Aren’t you penalized half the distance to the goal?

Phillip Sterling

Phillip Sterling’s books include two poetry collections, And Then Snow and Mutual Shores, two collections of short fiction, In Which Brief Stories Are Told and Amateur Husbandry, and four chapbook-length series of poems (Significant Others, Abeyance, Quatrains, and And For All This: Poems from Isle Royale). A fifth series, Short on Days, will be released in 2020.

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