Saturday, April 9, 2011

the land of nod

nighttime busy as a ship the stars frozen the
radio signals crackling along a north wind an
orange teddy bear ditched beside the highway in

April—in the middle of life under a eucalyptus—
you must excise all the connections—in the middle
of life in a sodium light spotlight, the moon’s

fingernail, the porch on Myrtle Street its
chipped paint railing & clothesline
nighttime busy as
a semi truck on a 6% grade a sheet of

particle board a  toy cat’s porcelain
face with inscrutable grin, in a sepia photograph a
gin bottle in the mirror—in the middle

of life on interstate 70 west of St Louis the gas tank
leaking—a rope hammock above the
blue blue crocuses its dreams decomposing:

there was a guitar with f-holes an
N-scale train depot, a wind-up toy duck
dressed like a clown on a trike but

wound down—a fire escape in green streetlight glow—
nighttime busy as a ship off the Oregon coast a
frozen light in blackness between dreams

Jack Hayes
© 2011


  1. Once again and to as beguiling effect as ever, that hallucinatory sense of place, each image flickering by as if glimpsed through a car or train window.

  2. Hi Dick & TFE

    Dick: Thanks, it's been a while--or so it feels.

    TFE: Thank you, sir!

  3. This poem is stunning. I mean it. And so glad to see the teddy bear come to life here.

  4. Hi Caroline: Thanks so much! Yes, I was thinking of the conversation on your blog when I wrote that part.


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