Friday, December 3, 2010

"December Inventory"

December Inventory

sparrows in tousled hair a
banjo strung with iron wire an a-
temporal glass of milk

echo within a wishing well—white
stones an alphabetical hex sign
a red barn in my arms the

black water the black e-
motional cottonwood limbs a
yellow backloader creaking thru drifts a

globe on a shelf its ecru oceans its
pink mountains its blue islands my
empty arms in the fog

a plate of garbanzos
a plate of potatoes & coconut the
brown juncos tearing the Russian olive’s

pods my emotional fingers against a sky
no longer anywhere a hermetic
snowdome’s figure skaters

a glass door a
musicbox in my lungs an
opening in space where sound escapes

Jack Hayes
© 2010

Hope you enjoyed the poem.  I’m also here to announce that there won’t be a Homegrown Radio feature this month—long story, but suffice it to say that I do have someone lined up for January, & it’s going to be some exciting music—so stay tuned!

In other news: M
any thanks to HKatz of The Sill of the World blog for an excellent & insightful review of The Spring Ghazals.  You can check out the review here.

If you aren’t familiar with this blog, you’re really missing out.  The quality of writing on The Sill of the World is high & HKatz’ The Week in Seven Words series is a unique concept that’s also executed with aplomb.  If you’d like to read HKatz’ observations on writing, you can check out my interview with her in the Writers Talk series right here.  There’s also a wonderful poem by HKatz accompanying that interview at this link.

Just a few reminders: The Spring Ghazals is now available on Amazon & (& presumably other Amazon international sites, tho I haven’t confirmed that.)  It should be available on Barnes & Noble within the next several days.  If you haven’t purchased the book but follow this blog either on Blogger or thru Networked Blogs, please consider doing so.  If you have the book, please consider writing a review on Amazon &/or Lulu.  Giving the book a positive rating on either of these sites is also helpful.  The book’s Amazon page is here; the Lulu page here.  Of course, I’d always welcome other bloggers reviewing the book or setting up interviews with me about it.

Thanks for your interest!


  1. I love this, John. Too many good lines to pick a favourite.

  2. Hi Martin: Thanks! Glad you liked it.

  3. Hey, I think I remember that post on the potatoes and coconut! Lovely piece.

  4. "a red barn in my arms", but as Martin says, all are too good to pick just one.


  5. Hi Kat: So glad you liked it! Thanks!

  6. Hi Tess: Yes, indeed: beans with shredded coconut--thanks!

  7. Beautiful list. I'm thinking about the line breaks. I've been reading a little handbook by Mary Oliver - effects created by the turning of the line at any of various possible points. More importantly, I'm thinking of my own December imventory. It would make a great theme for one of those group blog things, I don't know what they're called, where everyone writes on the same thing.

  8. Hi Sheila: Thanks! I saw the Mary Oliver quote on Twitter & liked it a lot. My line breaks have been quirky for a long time--it's the way I hear the words; I don't know that they always "translate" properly. But Oliver is right: you can take the same line & break it at different points & the effects will change drastically. Of course the context is important too--the surrounding lines; the momentum.

  9. Hi again Sheila: I'd love to see your December Inventory!


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