Gunpowder for Single-ball Poems The New Poetry Book From Alan Britt and Concrete Mist Press



Isis rolls through the Federation Ring

beyond Saturn.


You know the ring

precariously balanced

these past 10 billion years?


That ring,

that cracked fingernail

if you’re in a cane rocker

on a peeling whitewashed porch

beneath the dripping pecan trees of Athens, Georgia.


Well, Isis found a stream

near the University of Georgia,

a stream that sometimes freezes solid—

Isis approached the whole affair

disguised as a gas furnace

lapping her iguana blue tongue

around the thighs

of coal miners,


and Beethoven perfecting his Ninth.


And on that very night in Athens, Georgia,

Isis pulled a quilt

over the antlers

of 6º Fahrenheit

blistering her unlocked doors

of solitude.




This ’99 Reserve—

who’d you reserve this for,

Humpty Dumpty?

Perhaps you thought you’d catch me napping?

Dazing when I should be focusing closer attention

on your Proprietor’s Reserve Cabernet?

Well, the ruse is up!

So, don’t go waving banners or declaring holidays

for this anemic vintage.

Rumor has it that only the most cultivated spirits

can produce the exquisite amnesia required

by desperate poets like you and me.

Again, forget waving sentimental banners or letting

school out early for this anemic vintage.

This ’99 Reserve—

who’d you reserve this for,

Humpty Dumpty?






If only I could rise

from this velvet couch

and say what hasn’t been said

for millennia.


If only I could recall

the name of Gerard de Nerval’s


waddling the Champs-Élysées.


If only I could

fling my atoms

into perfect quantum orbit.


Then I might say that

words come too easily.


But you’d know better.


Just ask Marlon Brando

for a glimpse

into the future;

now that Marlon’s dead,

I’m dying to know.


Alas, if only destiny

had the sultry hips

of an hourglass.




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