We couldn’t resist one last Pop-Up YARN before our official 2015 season opening in April—partly because we’ve always sent our readers a Valentine (and following tradition, this first poem is an anti-Valentine of sorts), and partly because this second poem evokes winter so strongly and beautifully, we couldn’t bear to publish it when the weather warms.
So, Happy Valentine’s Day, and Happy Winter! See you again in the spring.
By Stephen Raymond
Stopping in Rural Kentucky
Your voice drifts on the smoke
that hangs in this karaoke bar
hidden somewhere under nameless dixie starlight,
and reaches me
who was 500 miles away just a day ago.
I inhale the tobacco
that touched your slightly slurred southern accent
and am filled with a high
no cigarette can possibly give.
I’ll never hold you,
or even touch your hand.
But I think I’ll start smoking when I get home,
while listening to the real version of this song
you sang so poorly, beautifully.
Wind wrinkles the new snow like time, as a weathervane shifts slowly east towards dawn. This farm has been empty for generations, but icicles have hung from the barn all winter. Soon they’ll start to drip.
the weight of snowflakes
on my lashes
* This is a haibun, a short prose/poem followed by a haiku or “micropoem.” Cool, right?
Stephen Raymond a college student fresh out of high school, who is looking to peruse a degree in creative writing. His poetry has appeared in journals such as Teen Ink, Modern Haiku, and Cattails. He is the Youth Ambassador for the USA for the Journal Cattails and regularly publishes his work under the names “Chase Gagnon” and “Chase Fire”.