Three Poems

by Josh Greschner

L.A.

Technicolor snapshots of heaven most high,
The marquee singed the dilettante’s eyes,
Smoke rose from Mae West’s breasts
On an effigy burnt at the South Central riots.
A d m i r e  t h e  d a y  t h r o u g h  7 0 - m i l  le n s e s:
Billboards, dreamcoats, refugees, celebrities
In lurid kaleidoscopic colours almighty,
Acid blotter stamped with the face of Aphrodite.
Hard-light burns from the ball in the sky,
Technicolor snapshots of heaven most high.

Immigrant

One’s life work
Is the curved iron of a minaret,
Others, a blood splatter resisting departure on an immigrant ship
From the setter’s smooth concrete.
But he forgets all sets in stone
Plundered from the Islands,
W o m b s  o f  n a t a l b o n e .
The setter spins the tongue in ovals
When slides are suffice
And the crew knows he hides
His chagrin with gin and ice,
B e h i n d  c l o s e d  b l i n d s  l e a k i n g  l i g h t.
The chiseler, the witness, the mythmaker
Of the inscription defying expected passé,
Shall win back elusive day.
When righteous man sees the conquered plane
Upright,
When righteous man sees the conquered plane
Concave.

Ukraine

Hooked on transmigration,
I’m not surprised
I believed everything I told myself.
Be it minstrel congregation
Within village oblast,
Or shrouding
Material culture
Within amorphous mass,
Backlight exposes transgressions
Anchored in the unperceived.
Deepen cause to disengage,
To disproportionate
Negative space between borders scythed
With dull blade,
Along lands the northern prism bleached
Like movie theatre screens,
Like noseringed cattle, careened by machine.

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