Wednesday 5 February 2014

2 Poems by Colin Dodds


A string of trucks forms my only company out here tonight
A string of stars forms the leg, belt, dick of a hunter
and sinks into the horizon, crossing the sky, crossing the mind

Imperishable Ursa Major prowls all night
around the pole star, which is just the haunch of another bear
Crossing the sky, crossing the mind

But the sky is orderly, the mind thrashes,
murders a brother, murders a family of bears
and spends its life with the corpses,
burying or resurrecting them

Each bear becomes a spoonful of darkness,
a medicine prescribed by a doctor and administered by a mother

Big and little dippers, unacknowledged asterisms,
offer the night sky in tolerable doses
after our appetites have fled to places harder to explain

Trucks are not stars, but trucks cross the mind
and the mind becomes trucks
And when the trucks vanish, the mind gives
a finish and a sense to their existence

The encounter with the trucks and the traffic,
the stars, spoons and night bears is difficult to deny
It is as perfect and incomplete as any
in the treacherous procession of nature

The Night Is a Kind of Crucible

The night is a crucible
Glowing in the streetlight was a bubble of phlegm
It makes a man inscrutable
Moving among fates that aren’t choosable
You say no I’m alright, crying by the ATM
The night is a kind of crucible

You may be great, but you’ll never be irrefutable
Wandering the windows of midnight, a pauper among gems
It makes a man inscrutable

You say life is a game lost, and thus unlosable,
And we all get depressed, on the climb inside the rose’s stem
The night is a kind of crucible

You search the carnival for something immutable
And try to divine jetsam from flotsam
It makes a man inscrutable

And in the morning, struggle to describe a vision suitable
To either the dearest or the strangest of them
The night is a kind of crucible
It makes a man inscrutable


Colin Dodds grew up in Massachusetts and completed his education in New York City. He’s the author of several novels, including The Last Bad Job, which the late Norman Mailer touted as showing “something that very few writers have; a species of inner talent that owes very little to other people.” Dodds’ screenplay, Refreshment – A Tragedy, was named a semi-finalist in 2010 American Zoetrope Contest. His poetry has appeared in more than sixty publications, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife Samantha.  <>

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