from Sermons and Lectures by Matt Hart



"I believe in desperate acts, the kind that make me look"
Both ways when crossing my fingers behind my back in the street
where the traffic's terrific, and I'm making a promise
that I know I won't keep to talk with you soon about
Kant's metaphysics   One reason after another in a multitude
of classic styles and miasmic colors   Stop and go emergencies
for any occasion and every budget   Vroom vroom vroom
See ya later, alligator   All I want's to write more poems
to be a good husband and a father and a teacher   This lecture
brought to you by anxiety over an interview   Heading home
from my current position/employ   I think about the people warm
and sleepy in their houses   The icicles dragging all our gutters
to the meadows   Snow or linoleum   Is anybody happy  Is anybody
torn in the talons of an eagle, a red-tailed hawk through the eyes
of a storm   And if anybody is, then can anybody fix it
Is anybody willing   The situation's lonely and I'm already forty
Weirdly, the whole world's right here with me   Right here
beside me, but nobody's home   I walk to the store for a twelve pack
of something, or light bulbs or toilet paper, coffee for the morning
Orange marmalade, English muffins   Tonight we'll think
our faces off, and then I'll do some sleeping   Longer than I can
remember I've wanted to amount to more than me, significantly
and anxiously, and not to be a negative and not to wear a mask
This message directly to you is a plea to hear back YOUR message--
any message you want   To hear you in my headdress   To see you
on my doorstep   3127 Manning Avenue, Cincinnati OH 45211
And when I pull your strings, you can set me on fire
And when the Jawbreaker's finished, you can
put on my shirt   We'll blow each other's covers
then we'll walk the red carpet   into the rapture
we will dance on the escarpment   our arrival
a surge of inter-mangled re-connection

Poem by Ben Gulyas


slowly
what is left
is cast upon the last star--
in long walking wishes,
legs of running water
they are dreams, really
shifting from face to face,
a commotion of voices...
oil lamps of flickering eyes
set to near boiling
far and away...
a strange old dream,
a bridge of birds...
the farthest storks
with translucent wings...lifting...
between mesmerizing moon
and mesmerizing earth...

a hint of crossroads...
a hint of boxwire...
the intransient dust of the mouth
slowly lifting
above those trans-Mongolian bones...
with horses standing on the grass
waiting so far away...
you can barely
sleep...

Directions / Seaborn Jones

The wind sharpens itself

on a man's face.

A woman brings rain

in wooden bottles.

He gives her a fist

full of flowers.

She eats them

one by one

then exhales petals

that take the shape

of a child.

The child sits

on the man's knees

while the man

tells a story

that he cannot remember.

He is drunk on rain.

The woman

sings a song

that she has never heard.

She is drugged by flowers.

The child wants to know

which way

the world is.

The man points

in one direction;

the woman, another.

Detached / Kathy Prescott


 
I dreamed I was decapitated,
all the while reminding myself
to relax my shoulders,
so as not to interfere
with the cutting.
Not so bad, really,
only the guy holding my hair
would describe where
the blade was heading,
being helpful.

The cutter - another gentleman
(historically correct, 
so preferably French)
did the work. Inch by inch
he made it to bone.
And I could tell, but it was not
that bad - just a little weird -
after countless birds prepared,
more Julia Child than
Mary, Queen of Scots.

I think we were standing
at the ocean - yes.
My body, left with
faculties and sight,
watched the fellow with
his sheathless sword stride
down the beach with my head,
swinging both.
No one said anything about me
being headless.

Surrounded by the
sounds of surf and
attracted by the smell,
I played at the edge
of the water. Seeing
small shells and creatures there,
I picked one up
and washed it off,
taking care not to spill over -
more Manet than Bergman, really.

Charmed, more than I ought
to have been (considering my plight)
by every aspect of the place -
grains of sand and vast
blue sky. I experienced the
scene as permanent -  
fleeting - not at all. A kind  
of odd sensation, really,
(more feeling than a thought)
like matter over mind.