41 Chapters
Medium 9781885635136

Lives of Greta

Rob Schlegel The Center for Literary Publishing ePub

There is that bird again
Finding its way
In transitive flights—

Not fear in the space
Where the rock was
But its fact—

A feeling of if and dirt
In the space where the rock was
A phrase and its refusal.

Then start again.

A feeling of if and a feeling of or

A feeling of and
And a feeling of then

Of where and what more
But when
In life’s nonsense

We think of faces
And trembling

Come to see them.

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Medium 9781885635136

Near the Creek Emptied of Water

Rob Schlegel The Center for Literary Publishing ePub

Dry-lightning and a thunder made
of needle and pitch—

a sock and its thread a bird found
outside the cabin, the bird

that disturbed the silence—by its feet
I hanged it with thread from the cabin’s eave—

and a tally of stains in the curtains.
These should be enough to keep the sick away.

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Medium 9781885635136

Economy of Winter

Rob Schlegel The Center for Literary Publishing ePub

They might have been olives or grapes
or opulent rows of each, spilling over
the penciled border beneath four or five
cerulean strokes; cumulus loosened
from the sea-dark sky, suffocated

where the paper is wavy
from where you must have paused
to imagine the burdens of composing
within which a drought is composed;
some need within the image itself;

as the tree from which the paper was fashioned
required water, as did the fields
from which the family was fed—

though never enough—when the sun was low
over the house divided
by the single telephone pole,
its endless distance from these dying fields.

Some might say it is the image of a house.
But the house is the image of the tragedies within it.

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Medium 9781885635136

Lives of Furrow

Rob Schlegel The Center for Literary Publishing ePub

My patience is writ
In riddance

In this one page of
A one-page
Letter from loss.

In the pond’s still water
What can I see

In sound? The me is me.

I narrate too much.

My hours are buried
In a furrow named Gone.

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Medium 9781885635136

Dusk by Flame

Rob Schlegel The Center for Literary Publishing ePub

The sudden insects and a shirt tossed onto the pond.

Faceless, the moths trouble nothing but the flame.

Isn’t it all—
the before and after of every gesture—remotely elegant?

The barn on fire and the wool of the shirt are trances.

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