Marsh Hawk Review is an online poetry journal sponsored by the Marsh Hawk Press collective. Marsh Hawk Review will appear twice a year, under the revolving editorship of collective members. Each issue will offer a selection of poems solicited by the editor, in addition to new work posted by poets in the collective.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

WILLIS BARNSTONE


HOPE IS NOT FAITH BUT ASPARAGUS


Most beautiful of things I leave is sunlight.

Then comes glazing stars and the moon’s face,

then ripe cucumbers and apples and pears

--Praxila (c. 450 B.C. E.)


Hope is asparagus and mango on

wild salmon; sex in a Lapland fjord.

Summer floats us childlike from reindeer dawn

into white nights. The free blue mountains, bored

with solitude and snow, take off their mist

and dance for huge-eyed fish. Ignorant faith

smells good with cheese. The Lhasa vultures hissed

circling the bloody stone, their joyous wrath

set to be fed on an old chopped-up corpse.

I lacked the eyes to feast on nature’s mad

crude sky-burial holiness and stayed

back in my room to swish sad-

ness down the sink. Asparagus and lox

bloat me. Hope is Sicilian marmalade.

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