Prose Poems, by Joel Chace.

arousal agoing adying gone agone agone around the anxious soul flitting
around for any answer at all a little a little armour around and
absolutely all voices speaking at once is the answer or the answer is
absolute silence

three-day wind groans against buildings to tell its journey out of
immense spaces along unwalled corridors of night sweeping over
blear-eyed limp-gray dawn and brittle exhausted noon cold wild flailings

of rain stutter profundities a furnace bangs on knocking through pipes
steam says throw off half-dreams grip sorrow's throat stare it down make

soul-sick flutterings pick the heart's frozen lock

the children move on their own voices move as moving water speaks as
light falls suddenly on the face of water crosslegged they continue to
sit in their world speaking making stories each child each with its own
separate name each child makes a story and not by turning to the speaker

not by fixing on the speaker's eyes or mouth do the young ones cease
being separate but by listening and looking outward as old people
speaking memories will look not at one another but at an evening sky and

in the words in the story the life of the one speaking goes out against
the sky becomes visible against that great screen and in their listening

the lives of the listeners go out to meet those words and when the
speaking is done the lives now joined commingled come back all into each


hundreds of dragonflies float and copulate above the reeds each blade of

watergrass so delicate so thin held long enough in someone's gaze would
become the shade of wind each pair of needle-linked lovers shaped like a

blue goalpost broken slightly tilted or a country mailbox filled with
outgoing messages its flag-arm raised and quivering

Joel Chace has new poems in publications such as Lost and Found Times, Tomorrow, Big Bridge, pith, Coracle, Three Candles and paper tiger '01. He has published ten collections of poetry, including, most recently, Uncertain Relations with Birch Brook Press, Greatest Hits with Pudding House Publications, and o-d-e whith Runaway Spoon Press. He is currently Poet in Residence at Mercesburg Academy and is Poetry Editor of 5_Trope Magazine at Webdelsol.


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