A Poetry Showcase from Holly Day

Animal, Avian, Beak, Bird, Blur, Chick

photo from pixabay

The Ex

Thought I'd try to look up an old boyfriend on Facebook
just to see what he was up to. After a little bit of searching,
I found him,
and discovered that he had become a professional photographer
and had all of these amazing photos and photo credits posted.

This made me really happy, and sad,
because apparently, I'd totally misjudged and even become completely unaware 
of how talented a photographer my ex was.
However, after about an hour of looking through his portfolio
and finally figuring out his address,

I suddenly realized that the person I was doing all this research on 
wasn't my old boyfriend at all,
but some guy In England
with the same name
who was a few years older than my ex.

The picture of him posing with his mom
in a picture essentially labeled, "me and my mother"
sealed it, because it was definitely not my ex's mother.
It was a different woman entirely.


I got rid of them because I didn't want my husband to find them,
the books with the stories in them that would make him sad
Had to take them to Goodwill hidden under folds of sweaters and old T-shirts
because I didn't want him to see the books, pick them up, say
"I haven't read this yet! It looks good!"

I have appointed myself guardian of our library, official censor of the house
an angel with a flaming, book burning sword denying him the stories
about parents losing their children, the hoplessness
of surviving past one miscarriage to the next, epistles of aloneness
barren landscapes I could see him disappearing into,
first into the books, then in life.

Editing Notes

Do not try to write in the style
of 15th century Chinese poets
except in English, where color
is some sort of metaphor, and everything smells
like sandalwood and death.

And do not try to write like 10th century Vikings
because they didn't really write anything down anyway
and if you're too scared to get on stage
and recite your Viking poems out loud to an audience
then you haven't really written Viking poetry anyway.

And do not try to write like the French Romantics
or the English ones either, for that matter
if you're just too cynical to rhapsodize about feet
or perhaps not cynical enough to gush about love.

The Lights All Went Down

You say I am out of control, a twirling dervish
of half-baked plans and tributes to rainstorms
of half-dead dreams and impossible adventures
of stubborn accountability and plausible denial.
Why do you keep me here?

If I had a telescope, I could show you I'm right
and it wouldn't have to be a very big telescope, either
just a handheld palimpsest, a sextant
a carpenter's level, a picture book. We could cut a hole
in the book, hide a gun or a dream in it
tape it closed for the next owner of this house.

Last Summer

How heavy the plod of elephant feet
that shake this carriage so. You and your impossible hat
are the center of all the universes that count
exuding clouds of lavender oil and the onions you ate
earlier today, perfect. This is where

I tell you to stop talking, but keep your mouth open
like you were saying something important
but I somehow froze time, that I had that kind of power.
I plug my ears against the world, see only you
and your annoyed, amused smile
we have stopped everything.

Bio:  Holly Day (hollylday.blogspot.comnewest books are (Anaphora Literary Press)and herHer writing has recently appeared in , and ) is a writing instructor at The Loft literary center in Minneapolis and Hugo House in Seattle. Hubbub, GrainThird Wednesday, The Tooth is the Largest Organ in the Human Body, (Weasel Press), (Shanti Arts), and (Wiley). Book of Beasts Bound in Ice Music Composition for Dummies