Ouch
by Kenneth P. Gurney


Everyday for a year
I waited for the bus to arrive,
then put all my words on it
and waved goodbye.

The overhead power lines crackle
and pop like breakfast cereal immersed
over a car-less street
where the house walls are built
by the inhabitants' neuroses
and the wind, somehow, accepts
these apprehensive definitions
and goes around.

I walk to where the sidewalk ends,
then along the dirt trace
until the world ends
somewhere not far from
the confession stones
where people kneel for hours
in a prayer for love promised,
but the only answer received
suggests the sand that the incoming tide
returns to the slight beach
among the volcanic rocks.

You asked for depth
and I gave you
Pollock's stringy book
and implied with a gesture
that beauty is at the bottom
of his dripping vision,
so you sifted through
his lines like separating hairs
while picking nits
or removing flies
after a long bicycle ride.

You asked for commitment
and your roof came crashing down
upon us both.





       Think of the Void
by Kenneth P. Gurney


Think of the void,
the echo of the big bang,
how the moon
rose into the sky
on the wings of crows,
how the magpies
stole fire from
the coyote's red fur
to ignite the sun.

Open mouthed, I shed
my skin, crawl out of myself
like the original snake:
offer the red delicious
to lovers so consumed by their heat
that they disperse
the barbed wire marking borders,

offer the golden delicious
to the Wall Street broker
who fails to see how luck
lines his pockets,

and offer the granny smith
to the boy scouts and girl scouts
at their first desert campsite—
so deep in the scent of juniper
and sage that the warm wind
covers them in the glitter
of star dust.





       Hot Bread on the Sill Cools
by Kenneth P. Gurney


Demand my affection
between the rows of blue corn.

An old folk song spills
from the farm house window.

We follow its lines back
to a threshold, return to a garden,

a love seat, an end table
with tall glasses of lemonade.

Demand my kisses
where the apples still hang

from stiff stems, not quite ripe,
but close—delicious to contemplate.





       Romance Novel
by Kenneth P. Gurney


Larka and I play a chess game.
We both set up black pieces.

It is seven years later, now,
and still we await the other

to make the first move.




Kenneth P. Gurney lives in Albuquerque, NM. His work appears mostly on the web as he spends SASE & reading fee monies on flowers for his lover. To learn more, visit his website.

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