ISSN 1556-4975

OffCourse Literary Journal

 Published by Ricardo and Isabel Nirenberg since 1998


Poems by Louis Phillips


When she smiled,
So many parts of her body
Sd to me:
"Make yourself at home."

I thought:
Home was never like this.



That word glissade,
Slips neatly into mind
& has many uses,

Especially while describing
A corps de ballet
Performing on snow

On faraway mountains,
Or slow slide
Of lake water

Under a row boat,
Steady shift
Of galaxies far away.

Thus,  since these lines
Glide from left to right,
It is for the best

We start with sleep,
Then slide gracefully
to the final line

& end with that.



"The word papa gives a pretty form to the lips. Papa,
potatoes, poultry, prunes, and prism are all very good words for the lips."       
                               Charles Dickens

As a prism of potatoes
Hurdled toward the prunes,
"Papa," I called, "the poultry
Is in danger, lives in ruins.

Who will save the poultry,
Prunes & prism?
Certainly not the potatoes,
Nor a vocative spasm

Of P's on earth."



Just settle in to see what happens.
Imagination is a mountain.
We climb it every day
Or we despair
Of ever climbing again.

Of course, not all poems are written,
& often we think
About nothing in particular.
It is frightening
How we disconnect
From ourselves,
Wandering landscapes
Not of our own making,
Nor even of our own choosing.
What falls to earth suddenly
Is not always an object
That gives off light.


Author Louis Phillips' most recent blog post on the Joys of Writing can be read at

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