by F. Daniel Rzicznek
|Plenty of sirens today. Say emergence. Say tied to the mast. Or say a part of home. A blonde noise beneath midwestern lamplight. A sighing, a sketchy coat. Give me alternating green and brown walls with an airy, blue ceiling or give me wood paneling, an arid fantasy. Michigan is a hand floating one direction and West Virginia flows the other—Ohio a bearhug looming in-between. (Noise, once more, of bone fracture.) Garbled ghosts behind open-toned strumming and chanting: the Pennsylvania woods. The little boy says he wants to hide in the sewer and grab at the legs of passing adults. Never actually take hold. Just the silvered edge of pretend. How ashen the postal workers looked. How sullen the neighborhood dogs. Inconvenience was my calling. A big wad of heart stuck in the blinds, an eye rolling in energy, the ears closing, teeth fitting. My head is just a skull. A school altogether. One view of the cosmos. Another dear old skull. I value this brazenness above all other virtues. Your world is a perfect interpretation. Voices and strings at the ready. The golden deadbolt as it turns. It’s lovely to encounter an answer, but only once in a while.|
by F. Daniel Rzicznek
|The sun cuts a piece of stream out of rock. Incarnation upon reincarnation and even the available words can’t find one of themselves for the astral venom in-between. Now the word spins—you’re good and drunk, drunk and good. Death: what would you do if given just a month to live? And a week, a day, an hour, a minute, a second? I’d look right at you. The sea is coarse and rough—it has no friends and wants none. Every day the classroom door troubles me. I feel like a chickadee trying to reason with a cat—prolonging the already-finished. The Great Bear materializes through the lake’s mist, takes my hand in his paw and crushes it. Three things in a row always create a fourth. The heart makes no language of the clock tower’s eleven oms—just another soldiering toward impossibility. You and I and the times we live in. Dogs talking across fences and streets on the first cold night.|
F. Daniel Rzicznek is the author of two poetry collections, “Divination Machine” and “Neck of the World,” and three chapbooks, “Nag Champa in the Rain,” “Vine River Hermitage,” and “Cloud Tablets.” Also coeditor of “The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Prose Poetry,” Rzicznek teaches writing at Bowling Green State University.