"days that end with a snakebite behind the eyes."

More Perihelion:

Bob Sward's Writer's Friendship Series

Book Reviews

Need to Know



Issue 11: The Necessary Eye

Issue 10: Out on a Limb

Issue 9: The Missing Body

Issue 8: The Lily

Issue 7: Passages

Issue 6: No More Tears

A quick list to poets featured in this issue:

Melissa Ahart

Sommer Browning

Sarah Busse

devin wayne davis

Karen D'Amato

Yaakov Fichman

Donna Johnson

Vera Kroms

Li Bo

Li Qingzhao

Ander Monson

Christopher Mulrooney


Todd Samuelson

Maria Terrone

Mihai Ursachi

Sophie Wadsworth

G.C. Waldrep

Martha Zweig

Vera Kroms

Anno Domini

I step out from the boulevard
behind my breastbone.
My leaving stutters,
a dying bulb.

Dread falls from the sun.
Mirrors fill with faces.
The edge of the small, flat
earth emerges.

Sparrows are beads
of the abacus.
Punishment eats the hours

until the old engine takes me.
My first home stands
in an avalanche of cats.
Dollar bills sink
in the bicep of my father.
All this is true.
It never happened.


Bishop's Weed

I possum among the hush
and gentle of the purlers,
the thinly armored threads,
the rabbit bitten tasties
hiding in the alley
of not yet. Appetite, locust
underside of tightly wrapped
languor, rewire the shark
path, divine the slide
of old realm. An empire
will change hands, gall
and golden in its robes,
its robberies a choke
accumulating underground,
another Caesar
cleaving the bed.


The Good Machine

It matters what I do here
like a bone too small to name
on which the ankle relies.
                        I am tamed,
with an upstairs mind. Desk-
pale, hothouse, employing twelve
kind of script for one idea.
                         I have greyed
on caffeine and the temperature
of boardrooms, days that end
with a snakebite behind
the eyes. Around me
                         pockets of talk
emerge like small towns
raised on orthodoxies of fence
repair, of baseball. Minutes
are filed in an envelope inside
a drawer. Briefcases gleam
like country clubs.
                         Sometimes I long
for the curve of cranium
angled above a text illuminated
by Trappists.


Walter Under Ice

Perhaps this is how
the world should seal
its angels. Untouched,
their faces fixed
in a yellowing
insomnia. The blades
of children's skates fleet
past your eyes. Under starched
water, you ripen like a bulb
awaiting thaw. The bellow
in your throat has thinned,
and someone has rented
your room. Nights
once run on muscatel now lie
flat as photographs. But you
are learning patience.