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Matt Dennison: a poem

Arrowhead Ridge

In this pathless journey two boys on

bikes compete with the morning

hillside's fifty little goat butts winking

at the sun. Every atom in the coffin

still spins, they tell themselves before

racing down the hill laughing with

no-think – Every cat catches the first

rat for the first time! – as at the sound

of thunder all the trees lift up their limbs,

a veritable mouth-fence of crows upon

the moon. Balloons carry the puppy

up the neighbours' steps, tiny cowboy

boots on porch – empty the pencil

sharpener one childhood gone.

Red sheets dream toward ground.

Ghost planes fly amongst the leaves.

The air has quieted – the flame is safe.

Ambulance driver steers with elbows

pulls on gloves father's ashtray silent

volcano dog face between fence posts

so lonely so lonely so lonely.

Matt Dennison is the author of Kind Surgery, from Urtica Press (Fr.) and Waiting for

Better, from Main Street Rag Press. His work has appeared in Verse Daily, Rattle, Bayou

Magazine, Redivider, Natural Bridge, The Spoon River Poetry Review and Cider Press

Review, among others. He has also made short films with Michael Dickes, Swoon, Marie

Craven and Jutta Pryor.


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