Apr/May 2018 Poetry

Two Poems

by John Sweet

Found: in ABQ – studio art jewelry by Jessica deGruyter

Found: in ABQ – studio art jewelry by Jessica deGruyter

breaking the baby in two

A simple pattern played on
someone else's piano,
and from a distance.

A chair in an empty field.

It's okay to ask for more,
as long as you understand
that this is everything

It's okay to want your son back,
or your mother,
but look –

without fear and loss,
these wars
would be meaningless.

Without the factories pouring
poison into the rivers
and burying it in the soil,
there'd be no America.

There'd be no mini-marts,
no strip clubs,
no burger, fries and coke for
two ninety-nine

You'd be able to do nothing
on your knees but pray.


a choice

or pewter skies over
pale october trees or more
                                or less

bones breaking the
river's surface

the shapes of angels where
they've been buried and
this is my gift to you

turn out the lights and
cry yourself to sleep

dream of your father's ghost
with his hands on fire

dream of your lover with
his collar and leash,
his clipped wings,
his cup of dirty water

taste the rust
when he kisses you

sing his favorite song
a mouthful of blood

not everyone is
promised a life worth


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