Poetry 2012

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Best Poems ~ Beginning Poetry, UNI, Spring 2012

 

Caught Without an Umbrella     by Danielle Westcot
Lost my umbrella
somewhere over the summer.
This manic rain can’t form full thoughts
Its cold and chaotic pinging
attacks me from all sides
as I step over slick white rectangles
in a crosswalk with wet flip flops.
 
Last year, rainy days were better.
Drops soothing, calm and certain
a melancholy song pulled from a piano,
harp strings plucked, resonant and tender.
Absent space where wind should be
allowed a melody of rain to echo
reverberations and quiet thoughts.
Days filled with variations on the theme
until darkness draped like a curtain closing,
softly surrounding the scene of my vision,
back when my umbrella had been the sky.
 

 

Spring Solace   by Chloe Brockshus

Care full of
the budding lilies,
she sheds her fleece.
lavenders aver
the first curve
Of the sun
rising. she savors
the peach as a
Ripening promise,
the flavor
warmed with her
tongue and with the
Absence of frost
which rose to the
night sky to crystalize
in the waning stars—
Meant not to see
but still to know.
a breeze boundless
stirs her eyelids to lift,
Deliberately guiding
her gaze to witness
the fingertips of the
barren tree kiss life.
Emboldened, she runs
through the prairie
with bare feet
cleansed by the dew.
Offering something greater
than wishes kept
by dead dandelions.

 

- .-. ..- - ....   by Blake Burns

I wish you understood Morse Code
That way when I'm tapping on the roof of your mouth
You'd know what to say without tripping all over it
Like a walk home after a late night of forgetting.
And when you wake up in the middle of the night
And dreams of perfect worlds come out speaking in tongues
I'd just knock out-
"LISTEN TO ME STOP.
DON'T PUSH ME DOWN LIKE VODKA AFTERTASTE STOP.
YOUR DREAMS HAVE GOOD THINGS TO SAY STOP.
AND THEY TELL ME IN HEARTBEATS STOP
I AM WHERE THE TRUTH GOES STOP."
But instead when I try to explain
I come up like
Vodka aftertaste
Dripping down your chin.
It's hard to get used to a different language.
For some it just takes time.
And I know that sometimes patterns can be hard to follow
Or even seem nonexistent.
But I believe that if you just keep trying to swallow
And be patient and listen
You'll understand that it's not that difficult
To spit out something beautiful.
When you were young, you understood completely
Every word you spoke shined like a new light bulb
Letting the world know that you were exactly who you were.
As you grew up, I tried sending messages like-
"CAN YOU STILL HEAR ME STOP.
IT SEEMS LIKE YOU DON'T CARE STOP.
IT SEEMS LIKE YOU'VE DROWNED ME OUT STOP.
OR MAYBE YOU JUST STOPPED LISTENING STOP.
NO MATTER WHAT I'LL STAY HERE STOP.
AND SOME DAY YOU'LL REMEMBER HOW TO STOP.
AND TRY TO FIND THAT NOISE IN THE BACK OF YOUR THROAT STOP."
I'm still sitting in your stomach
Tapping out new notes every now and then.
I haven't changed the way I talk
You just forgot how to listen.

 

 

[I want to cut my hair . . .]   by Alexandra Bissell

I want to cut my hair.
I want to hear the crackle of strands
snapping between metal, feel them
crunch beneath my intention like snow.
I want to see the lifeless parts of me
sink and settle at my feet.
Maybe then,
you won't recognize my face–
change the frame, obscure the truth
of my freckles,
of the shape of my
name.
 
I want to rip flower petals from their stem.
I want to feel the soft paper rupture
like the blood vessels beneath too white skin, watch them
quiver in the wind, anchored in my pinch until
I release.
Maybe then,
I could taste what it was like to be YOU and me–
change perspective, obscure the throb
of my quarantine,
my middle ground.
 
I want to hurl dishes at the wall and hear them explode.
I want to scream red-orange fire and beat
the walls until my fists bleed
purple roses.
Maybe then,
your deceits would let me sleep–
change the words, obscure the truth
of hearing the lonely click of the telephone,
echo off the cold bathroom floor, the truth of you
having quit
me.
 

 

Body Language   by Abby Sieren

A rock of thought drops on my synapses
Creating ripples throughout my body
Ancestral memories of nature’s rhythm echoes
Flitting on my nerve endings
Past moments dance shadows of your hands
Leafing through my pages and tracing new lines
They open a need to be read completely
To find an adventurer to search
To walk the edge of the precipice
To jump
Splash
 
I find a new longing
The need not to be read
But to be filled with words
Words I don’t know
With meanings I can’t touch
Not yet
I wait for a writer to take pen to my pages
To fill me
To write a story with his hands

 

 

maps   by Lauren Jones

 

during the thawing season, we try to exist,

making our own maps of this town,

dividing streets and crossing sidewalks;

the dotted lines I trace with my fingertips.

the blue where the rivers live,

golden stars on places we want to go,

 

the fragile crackle,

jagged lines from many folds;

the red “x” on the places you dare not explore,

and we take them, and we make them

and we trace them, on our pale skin

and we give this city our identity

where our street lines meet

rivers calmly flowing into one another.

 

Break    by Christopher Leonard


Figuratively speaking my mind is like an oil spill

Dirty thoughts drip from nerve ending to nerve ending

Clogging the porous mechanism of my interworking

I must clear this pool of puss before it leaks

I feel my vocal chords tangle in torturous tantrums

Stutter and stammer

I break as the words stumble from open mouth

“I’ve not been faithful to you…”

 

 

 

 

Insane Insane    by Brian Thornburg

Simple little lily laughter

rumple ripple stilted stammer

clipping clamor

chloroform captor

freaky freaky

faster faster

shot the ladder bladder balls

got the offered rocks it all

plastered pisser purple place

liquid love tasted lace

lumpy little couch cushion

open mouth pout pushin’

crackle creaking crickle crew

screwed rude shoulder shoe

virtual vertigo gutter up in somersaults

butterfly butterball slippincision cyclical it’s called

insane

insane

it’s so insane

venom vision vivid vein

whisper wyvern crisp cocaine

tissue stain

stipple stripe

pimple posse glossy light

listed mash potato math

melted messy dressy drab

drooling dragger

body bagger

gruesome hips

grimly haggard

happy pattern

pupil fatter

losing loosely looping ladders

 

 

 

 

 

Wendigo    by Seth Echelbarger

 

A walk down the forest road I took

to clear my mind, to overlook

the horrible deed I had done

in the house where the blood had run

down my chin and over the thumb

Life was lost, but I was numb

out the door and back I did not look

through the woods and over the brook

darkness stood and branches shook

the wind did blow, hissing

like a voice with a body missing

then a chill ran down my spine

the wind called a name

mine

I tried to shake the feeling

of someone watching, I was reeling

No one was there that I could see

the only one on the path was me

I quickened my pace

my heart did race

as this did happen once before

A tale from native lore

a demon of the wood

possessed me like I never thought one could

back to the house where I did show

the hunger for flesh like the Wendigo.

 

 

 

 

Alone    by Elliot Schmitt

 

Sitting on my porch

A night breeze brushes my cheek,

And I start a familiar routine.

Sparks jump and flash

Trying to ignite

The invisible fumes

To be consumed by fire.

 

Finally, after many attempts,

The flame stays

Allowing me to take my first drag.

Cigarette smoke curls around me

Dancing in the night air.

 

As nicotine is pumped, with blood,

To the tips of my fingers and back,

I make a conscious note

Of the wind, caressing my arm,

Wishing I had someone…

 

I inhale again, smoke filling my lungs,

and let my mind drift.

Thoughts of you begin to fade

And I take comfort in the stars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Still to come: Poems by Chelsey Garrett, Levi Klopping, Dylana Bowen