Poetry Break by John Grey (#4)

By: John Grey


dragonfly for john grey two drops of ink marilyn l davis



They are miraculously small

considering how easily they catch the eye.

But they are real creatures,

from families, with lifelines

and lifespans.


Buzzing above the pond’s surface,

they have that instantaneous

explicit identity.


Substance and light

cut into perspective.

Wings flutter invisible.

Metallic color glints.


Dragonflies make moments

out of nothing.

They resonate

in the flexures of the eye.


john grey poem man reading


I’m lying on sand

under blue sky,

heat and light stretching

all the way to my feet,

my guy, my brow,

and beyond –


I bring Kafka along

each Narragansett summer

but get distracted by the gulls,

the waves

and the young women

in bikinis of course –



just watching

those lovelies

feels more like sex

than actual sex does


a perspective, by the way,

more Kafka-esque

than anything in ‘The Trial’ –



john grey poem young boy not john two drops of ink



He wasn’t the usual bald tattooed thug

or smartly-dressed businessman.

He wasn’t one of a row of men

like pigs at a trough.

With one young giggle,

all of the women’s postures were rendered absurd.

Their whoredom was wasted.


He was just a kid on the other side of the street.

One of them winked at him

but stopped short of a come-hither.

Low-cut blouses, mini-dresses,

and makeup like paint –

he had never seen the like before.

Merciless neon light came on,

added the years back to their age.


Their nightly work required nothing more

than their backs, their spread legs,

their connivance with their conscience.

There was nothing in there about baby-sitting.

Having just learned

that a woman’s figure is designed to reproduce,

he was intrigued enough to stand and watch,

and surprise himself

with something approaching carnality.


“A little angel,” the women called him.

But it wasn’t all fumbling for loose change

that he was doing in his pockets.

For the first time in his life,

hand and eye

yielded to such intimacy.




John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident.

Recently published in New Plains Review, Stillwater Review, Louisiana Review, and Columbia College Literary Review.

Also  published in Examined Life Journal, Evening Street Review and Columbia Review with work upcoming in Harpur Palate, Poetry East, Visions International and Spoon River Poetry Review.



Other links for John Grey:

  1. An interview with John Grey at The 3288 Review
  2. HEArt Online
  3. Google results for John Grey’s work

Published posts on Two Drops of Ink:

1) Poetry Break by John Grey

2) Poetry Break: By John Grey (#2)

3) Poetry Break by John Grey (#3)


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