John Grey is a prolific poet. He’s been published multiple times in reputable poetry reviews, magazine, and anthologies. We’re proud to have him as a part of the Two Drops family of poets.
TIME FOR A SHOWER
All it needs is some rain around here.
The land doesn’t need to tell me that
but it does.
The weary pasture cries out,
“I can’t do this on my own.”
Even the toppled fence posts
would prefer to mildew and rot
from the inside
than sear like bullock skulls.
Every silence is about the weather.
Unworked fields. Mute birds.
A cloud does float in
from the horizon,
with patches of gray
like those shadows on the moon.
But from below,
it’s like a drifting safe
to which no one knows the combination.
This landscape feels as if
it once held its breath in expectation,
an expectation never realized.
So it gritted and gripped
until its lungs gave out.
To cap off death’s allegory,
I see, between a sorry looking grove of trees,
an old abandoned shack,
its derelict partner of a barn.
Someone tried to make themselves a life here.
But then a drop of rain
taps on my shoulder,
And another splats gently on my head.
The weather has finally broken
but like a patron who arrives at the theater
long after the actors took their bows.
Finally, the cloud splits open
like a wet paper bag.
It rattles the roof of that shack.
I know what it’s saying.
“We’ll make a farmhouse of you yet.”
WHY YOU’RE HEARING SONIC YOUTH AT SUCH DECIBELS
I’d live in orange milkweed
if it were a country.
I’d travel the lands of birdsong,
sleep in the vale of streams.
for all the purity of its intent,
is obsessed with people.
It herds them in great numbers,
makes them live shoulder to shoulder,
attitude to attitude,
belief to belief.
I get along fine with Solomon’s seal,
the skittish rabbit on the trail
and the breeze,
even when its gets so full of itself,
it becomes wind.
But I’ve neighbors on either side
and they have me.
The air is thick with others breathing.
Every sound is littered with their words.
I either make allowances
or go to war on these intrusions
into my sense of self.
Sometimes, I just turn up my music loud.
I hugged her to me
as a road-train crossed the sky,
or was it a chorale of drummers
or the choreographed stamping
of the Chinese.
It was temporary.
Nothing that loud ever lasts.
A million rough-voiced sailors.
the combined clang of a thousand factories,
an angry god – not the God
but one no longer worshiped –
I was delighted to be at least their equal
for she felt safe.
After a half hour or so,
the locomotive left the station,
the rocket burst out through
Earth’s upper atmosphere,
a multitude of rifle ranges shuttered.
She fell asleep.
Sorry Angela, I told her,
I can’t help you there.
John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in New Plains Review, Stillwater Review, and Big Muddy Review with work upcoming in Louisiana Review, Columbia College Literary Review, and Spoon River Poetry Review.
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