Spring 2010

Table of Contents - Vol. VI, No. 1


Poetry    Fiction    Reviews   

Judy Grey


Phasing Out

No wonder the Olympians have retired,
moved down the Mount to rest in textbook
footnotes. We've always asked too much of them.
Take the huntress, Artemis, the moon goddess,
who daily hauls the sea up rocks in coves
and sand on beaches as if she’s dragging up
a quilt from a great bed (water-logged)
that must be raised and spread out for the night.

She’s had it with the “Old Man” and “blue cheese,”
despite her shadow columns in winter woods,
her crescent pendent in the evening sky,
her giant sphere that rises bleeding orange.
With these she spawns our dreams, our promises,
our flowery protestations of desire
like a magician pulling strings of scarves
from the dazed assistant’s open mouth.

The moon walk was the sign the fates ordained,
not Michael Jackson’s step, but “one giant leap.”
The insult of that boot, that human foot
imprinted on her back was ill advised,
one step too far perhaps. She slips away
diminished in earth’s shadow every month,
a gradual retreat like glass and stone
polished off in slivers by the tide.


The Surface of Things

September is the season for spider webs
tangled behind a curtain, looped to a vase.
I wipe them away while the news repeats itself

and I watch the tide, which is either coming or going.
As always I’m sliding over the surface of things
like a water strider, light on a river’s skin,

a river that scours rock, marbles sand,
suspends fine sediment, glittering
remnants of the past caught in the current,

falling in layers to harden and crust the earth,
which also skims along, orbiting
through time, blue and white and vulnerable,

like the water strider now riding high on the water
now pulled below where it slips inside the mouth
of the trout who lives on shifting silhouettes.

Later, when the light slants through the window,
a spider slips out of a crack in the wooden frame.
I see its shadow move across the curtain
performing acrobatic feats, each leg
distinct, each movement fine; it spins and spins.


© Judy Grey



Poetry    Fiction    Reviews   

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