Featured Excerpt: Four from TRANSLATIONS ON WAKING IN AN ITALIAN CEMETERY

by Michael Keenan

 

DREAMS IN THE WITCHHOUSE, SWAN
POINT, RHODE ISLAND

 
Maple blossoms for Lotte

and a tyrant snow

 
I left that night
because I

had a horrible
dark

           feeling, there

was nothing there
for me, nothing

left, nothing
to begin

                     with 10 months in the mirror, watching you/fade

I needed something

           A pine-forest-frenzy, coming
           full-on-night

A mirrorball
macabre, no more
snow,

All
the crosses in Greenville,

A blank page: in a book of blank pages.

 

 

BATHHOUSE OF THE WINDS

 

Spiral staircase
to

a few
more daylights,

isn’t so much to
ask

 

 

VICTORIA’S WINTER

 

                  Familiar breath-
                  -chains, open, sudden-

                                         -ly slipping off your glass heart softly:

 
sun-drenched photographs
taking themselves

 

 

FROM OLNEY
HYMNS

 

Starlings, Darkness,
are a throne, although the
day

will steal its own
lantern. Sit back,
cut off
another piece of pineapple with
your legendary neon

bowie knife,and
wait in
the window for
the next ship to come. Old
Summer.

A few intimacies on Avenue A, dandelion-
                                          -wine

Provencal daughter of
the salt-flats,

trust me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

BATHHOUSE OF THE WINDS originally appeared in alice blue #16

TRANSLATIONS ON WAKING IN AN ITALIAN CEMETERY will be published by A-Minor Press in June 2014.

 

 

While alternately wandering through Rhode Island cemeteries and obsessively watching Twin Peaks, Michael Keenan wrote the chapbook, TWO GIRLS, which was released by Say No Press in 2009. Shortly thereafter he received his MFA in Literary Arts from Brown University and moved to New Orleans, Louisiana where he drove a waffle truck around the French Quarter and wrote poems on receipts from Café Du Monde, some of which have appeared in Poetry International, the PEN Poetry Series, Fence, A-Minor Magazine, RealPoetik, Paul Revere’s Horse, Caketrain, Right Hand Pointing, Ad-Hominem Art-Review and Blue Fifth Review, among others. Currently Michael spends his days at Columbia University.

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