poemimage

Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary.

Tag: childhood memory

Atomic War and the Baseball Championship At Stake

baseball 6
Earlier that day in school

We were told to ‘duck and cover.’

The teacher explained:

Those communists will soon lay waste

To the surrounding farmland and fields,

The blast will be as brilliant as the sun.

Do not look into it!

Charred flesh and animal remains will be

Driven by the force of the wind through the classroom windows.

Pray to god they do not launch multiple warheads:

Evaporating the dairy farms,

Tractor dealerships and pine forests.

night game

You must, as one, kneel beneath your desks,

Noses pressed into the floor,

Knuckles clasped firmly behind your heads,

Under no circumstances open your eyes!

cloud ball

I stared at lines

On the wooden floor

Wondering how deep

The grooves went.

cloud ball

Sometimes they led us into the basement,

Turning the lights off:

I listened to breathing

In the black, damp air:

A multitude of moist

Nostrils inhaling

Cold

Concrete.

baseballl2

That night at the baseball game we were playing for the championship.

‘Everything depends on tonight’s effort,’ said the coach.

‘Everything.’

baseballl three3cloud ball

K.C. by Steven McCabe

boy and space 2

boy in space

Seeing the unseen between my eyes and outer space

new eye space

I was a boy painting my sparkling new bicycle

With house paint

now this

Squinting in the shade of a sunflower

Wiping soil and lumps of melted star off the brush

the sumerian flower

Aiming for that white-as-a-skeleton-invisible-sky-hourglass

Concept of two gods becoming one

sumerian lad

Me and my bicycle at the intersection –

Red lights fading my pupils dilated

triptych 2eye seven

from Jawbone – Ekstasis Editions – 2005

When I was a boy in Kansas City, one summer, I studied the sky. It was a dull white far off in the distance, and yet up close ‘it’ was invisible. So it dawned on me to paint my new bicycle white; up close the bicycle would be invisible, at a distance everything would seem normal. My mother was more than happy to keep me busy and found the paint and a couple of large brushes. I threw myself into the task, painting the seat, the chain, the handlebars…everything! Sadly the next day the paint flaked off and my experiment failed. Several decades later I was reading a creation myth about two gods battling in the sky. One god lost a foot to a sharp knife and black ‘blood’ (night of course) filled the sky. I remembered painting the bicycle, and decided to harmonize both ‘sky’ narratives, intertwining them in a poem. My editor reviewed my work and, being a minimalist, took out her pen; underlining, crossing out, and circling lines. In the end I had a nine line poem.