The forgotten poem, existing in title only: Yellow.
Which is a bruise at three weeks, or memory’s shade in autumn.
In what black folder does it hide? In which blinding light?
I take comfort in primaries, lose sleep at the edges.
Where fraying begins and annotation dwindles to scrawled lines.
Above the bones and flesh of the Egyptian gods. Above my books.
Within these lost minutes. Those moons, bereaved. The hours.
Desire germinates even after our rainless decades. Yellow, again.
The color of sulfur (the devil’s realm) or the traitor’s door.
Of cowardice and warning. Of aging and decay.
How to recover what’s sifted away, the residue of our loves?
Each day more bits break off, never to be reattached.
But you, I blend with the sky, perfecting trees, the grass.
* * *
“Yellow, Lost” was published in wildness, Issue no. 10, in October 2017. wildness is an imprint of Platypus Press, which published my work Interval’s Night, a mini-digital chapbook, in December 2016 in their 2412 series. If you’re not familiar with wildness, check it out. In fall 2016 Poets & Writers named it in their article Nine New Lit Mags You Need to Read.
Is fault on a blameless day,
scrawled on a washed-out sky.
My friend’s music orbits his home,
worms through the cracks in the bluest lines, ever new
and permanent, staining even his hope
long after the lights stutter away.
And the rain’s attenuated sorrows?
They’re coming, he says. Like goats
through a fence. Like lava. Like tomorrow.
* * *
“Sometimes Love is a Dry Gutter” was first featured at Vox Populi in January 2017. I’m grateful to editor Michael Sims for supporting my work. It is the opening poem to my recently released chapbook, Buddha’s Not Talking, which is available here for $10 plus shipping and tax (where applicable). Simply type in “Okaji” to view all of my available books, or just add the title.
The winner of Slipstream’s 35th Annual Poetry Chapbook Competition, Buddha’s Not Talking is now available for purchase. Slipstream Press has not yet provided an order link on their site, but signed copies may be ordered here. Simply type in “Okaji” to view all of my available books, or just add the title. $10 plus shipping and tax (where applicable).