Friday, January 29, 2010

Helix #2

[New poem by yrs truly. New title, too. As Eberle says, if you're going to invent a new form, you oughta be able to name it. So I did. Will there be more? We shall see!]

a drab January goldfinch
a letter written on yellow legal paper October 1978
a white two-story house a red door

an Oregon butte flashing orange at sunrise
a tidal pool pulsing with sea urchins
you are far removed

a junco skittering across the porch
a willow bough frothy with wet snow
a quart of Ballantine ale

a white pick-up a ladder in the truck bed
a magpie scudding above the highway
winter’s horizons shimmering with ghosts

fog rolling blue & white from the ridge
you are sobbing & nothing adds up
a yellow January sunrise

a yellow August sunrise a screen window
a bald eagle perched atop a cottonwood
a dog-eared copy of Leaves of Grass

irrigation pipe on wheels sunk in the drifts
a brown fedora a black print skirt
a willow’s orange limbs in the snow in Lake Fork

you are somewhere in the fog beyond the fog
a summer morning’s sobbing birdcalls
a gray t-shirt a pair of stained Reeboks a television

wire-rimmed glasses red flannel pajamas
irrevocable distance between then & now
footprints in snow on the frozen lake

Jack Hayes
© 2010


  1. Nice! I'm glad your copy of Leaves of Grass is dog-eared.

  2. Hi K: Thanks! I read Whitman a lot when I was younger.

  3. I really like this new form and I'm beginning to see how the patterns form the whole. Very nice, Jack!

  4. Hi Karen: The form isn't systematic, but it is a vehicle for a sort of improvisation, which I like. Glad you're enjoying these!

  5. Oh Wow, I Love it!

    Love it, Love it.

    These 'Helix' poems are my absolute favorite you've ever posted.

    And Eberle's right: if you're gonna invent something new, you better name it! ;)

    -- Great job.

  6. Hi Ginger: Thanks! I've liked these--now just sitting here waiting for more to happen! I always worry about jinxing myself with numbered sequences. But really glad you like them!


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