Paul Kloppenborg

Hart Crane

outspoken tears of the curved white poem
past lighted childhood,
the ocean's tick over rings of jazz
typing the day's synthesis

his history built on rhetoric
stolen puppet of tugged dreams

the fruitless rubbish of innocence imagined,
love's rhyme, drowned beauty of tossed commas,
besotted in glass, the Brooklyn axle to the stars

lapping, kissed by the derrick's shadow
in the floating stone of sleep

mocked, the Victrola's laughter in mirror echoes
built on the shells of sonnets, celestial pantoumimes,
the cool pulse of the cool promise of love

punched words, the wrecking lyric drift
baggy with cigars and saddness astern

his gleam martyred by the dollar's keeping
civilisation's hands hurry out a tune
as twilight slowly turns the rivets of heaven

lonely, time’s tide between stanzas,
the chilled wound of words
the symbolic black leap
whorling to death's deepest part


We only live in space
Filling it, refilling it

Yet, like seed boxes
One can approach oneself

In stages, through gates
Stopping on white pebbles

Past cool, dark, moist fields
New shoots from sickle and hoe

Or, under maples and persimmons
The translucent paper sliding doors

Reflect a quietness of spirit
In welcoming seasons, in seeing them off

Up wooden planks, stockinged soles
On gentle ripples of straw matt

Slow, slow, slowing stepping
Steps under beamspan and length

One's renewal in pausing and thought
Planted in time yet harvested by time

Paul Kloppenborg works as a librarian in Melbourne, Australia. He is widely published in both print and electronic journals. His first anthology (along with 6 other international poets) was published by Two Dog Press in 1998. A second anthology was published by Funky Dog Press, Detroit in 1999. Paul’s first chapbook Poetic Confectionery (2002) is available from the Canadian publisher CNV was 2002. He is Co-ListServ Administrator of The Muse.


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