Wednesday 20 April 2016

5 Poems by Ziggy Edwards


When I die it will be Spring:
before dawn, only the dim 

fluorescent above the stove,
the distant burble of birds. 

I will be alone and calm,
will survey the fading sky 

like a farm boy setting off. 

I say this, knowing well
it might be blood and panic; 

it might be winter. Knowing
it will not be my choice.

Faint Wet Finger

When a tear leaks into my crow's feet
I keep it there, feel air sear
with cold wings the grooves I sow
squint by smile, the way I squint now 

as I cut through the park alone, branches
raindancing blank blue sky. I coax and savor
its ticklish contrail, the way out of breath
means I am breathing hard.

A Child's Riches 

I met a child on the road.
We walked together
in our muddy clothes. 

In his light voice
he asked travelers for money.
Refugees and thieves
pulled coins from their sleeves. 

He spent them all
on a room with two pallets,
and I kept silent. 

The child led me along the warped porch
pulling my arm, but soon ran ahead.
Later I would find him
asleep in the dirt. 

In full dark I stepped from under the eaves
into a sky flooded with pinwheeling stars.

For Jim Henson 

Kermit's voice sounds tinny now
in credit card commercials, and I see you
with ping-pong balls strapped to your hands,
teaching college dropouts how
their fingers are mouths, how sadness is
when you tuck your head and frown
but can't cry tears.

Someday All This

In the break room there is a window:
portrait that bounces and twangs with each step closer
until you stand framed in its ten-story drop,
studying sky’s wool teeth winced with flashing radio needles,
parking lot of frosted cars, brick buildings between.
Pigeons arc tar rooftops like trick decks of cards.
Woman in red ski hat, hands in pockets,
walks under phone lines festooned with snow-filled shoes.
Neck of soda cold between your fingers,
you glance toward laughs: the Weight Watchers clique
looping the hallway a second time. 

[author's note: "Spring" originally appeared in Rune , "Someday All This" first appeared in Barbaric Yawp (it has been revised since publication), and "A Child's Riches" first appeared in The Brentwood Anthology. ]


Ziggy Edwards is the proud owner of a loft bed. She lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where she discovers hidden neighborhoods and shortcuts across private property. Ziggy's poems and short stories have appeared (or will appear) in publications including 5 AM , Confluence , Main Street Rag, Illumen , and Dreams & Nightmares

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