Poetry — June 29, 2017 12:11 — 0 Comments

Two Poems – Graham Isaac

Redirecting Limited Mental Space to Romanticizing the Current Situation

We are teaching each other to make fists so
when the time for punching comes,
we don’t hurt ourselves.
A poster ripped from a telephone pole or
covered with contradicting stickers.
Reading up on railroads, both underground
and for hopping.

A lifetime of sweaty basements and darkened bars
did surprisingly little to prepare us
for guerilla warfare at the coffeeshop.
Those phone calls to our representatives aren’t

as glamorous, but we crush
finger exercises and pop knuckles
and shout solidarity with Princess Leia.
A surprising number of people show up
to the thing.

Maybe it is working, our fists
haven’t come in handy yet.


“Good Morning Son. Your Father and I are
planning on dying soon.”

. . . is what I heard over the Sprint Network
when an idle mention of Life Insurance, and how
they are finally getting On That.

My Grandpa’s funeral, my Aunt’s
funeral, my Grandmother’s funeral,
stacks of paperwork. runs to party
supply stores for ribbons
and picture frames, the tedium of
memorials, then the floodgates.

“. . . so if, you know, The Lord decides to take us
both at once, make it easy on us. . . of course, that’d
be harder on you kids. . .”

That would be consistent with the behavior
of the Lord I’ve met.
First I picture a car accident
something bloody on a bridge, called to
Identify. . . But no.

This would be more like Enoch,
aforementioned Lord giving
the two finger beckon;
my parents holding hands
the way they do, silently
when the right
jazz standard,
or Beatles song comes on,
in one of the cars they
actually liked,
the little yellow one maybe

and they just




Graham Isaac is a writer, performer and illustrator from Seattle, Washington. He holds an MA in Media and Creative Writing from the University of Wales in Swansea, where he co founded The Crunch reading series in the back of a speakeasy. He is author of multiple poetry chapbooks, including Filthy Jerry's Guide to Parking Lots, released by Babel/Salvage Press and The Third Best of All Possible Outcomes, from Shotgun Wedding. Since 2011 he has co-curated The Medicine Ball, a multi-disciplinary showcase for writers, actors, and visual artists. His work has appeared.

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What am I?

Bioluminescent eye
That sees by the shine
Of its own light. Lies

Blind me. I am the seventh human sense
And my stepchild,

Scientists can't find me.

Januswise I make us men;
Was my image then—

Remind me:

The awful fall up off all fours
From the forest
To the hours…

Tick, Tock: Divine me.

-- Richard Kenney