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Alan Botsford-I

mamaist drops (1)



Time is father’s

Nose to the ground.

Space is mother’s

Sweat off her brow.

When together they

Lie in each other’s arms,

Poems happen–

We are the needle

In the haystack

Of their love.




Hanging the nail on the wall

Of all is his crucifixion.




Death be not proud, he

Says, and peeks

Under the shroud.


Here, though, the grace

Note is a human





The lion’s mouth is no place to prattle

When the lion’s share is more listenable in silence.


(In defeat, abundance.

In solitude, friends.)


(Deep space

Deepens time)




Just a book?

Just a look?

People have died

From a look




I’m an ex-word

I was spoken once, and

I was all

That was needed

To be said.




I’ve been hiding

Under my mind

But now I’m ready

To sell the

Idea of where

I went.



Shot to death by

The sound of a word,

He flat-lined his

Way back into Being,

As the birthday

Of your future.




Slow growth’s victory

In the fast lane.

What’s transitory

Is time’s gain.




Load up time

With memories

And the stowaway

Is always art,

Hidden away in the steerage

Until out in the open seas.




Dad’s debt he

Owed the Dead

Games life

With strife.


Mom’s bent is home

To which she comes

Each night, unspent.




Pulling magic out of a hat?

Grab it! says one.

Rob it! says another.

Did you say wabbit? says still another.

Ribbitt, I say, for the hope of

The world.




Harmony is a thing of the past.

Golden is the present.

While meaning is

What the future does.




Like birds in winter,

How do they know

It’s time for them to go


For fear there is still

Too much fear in the air.

Come out of these words, come out

Count on our own flesh

And blood to be

In the garden.




Petrified, the cuts running deep,

I see the wound-image

In my mind’s eye.




The music the wind plays

Might twang like a plucked

String of a harp, or groan

Like a cello, but this time

The wind plays it by heart,

Night and day only a

Breath apart.




The crow’s perch

Is limited by

The eagle’s eye.




He became a rock

In the road, smoothed

By a thousand steps, kicked

Eventually into a ditch

Where he was picked up

And used in a wall

That stood a thousand years.




You’re right, life

Doesn’t start

In the body.

Hunger originates

In the heart

Of existence

If existence has

A heart.

It is ours

To follow

As our pilot.

It goes out,

Out goes

Our light.




In all my days of heart

It still doesn’t make any more

Sense—art or no art.

To muddle through

I’ve learned, however,

Takes art.




What mothering instinct

Isn’t soon fathered in ink?