Sunday Oct 22

SuermondtTim Tim Suermondt has published two chapbooks and two full-length collections of poems, Trying To Help The Elephant Man Dance (Backwaters Press, 2007) and Just Beautiful (New York Quarterly Books, 2010).  He’s had poems in many magazines and online, including The Georgia Review, Poetry, Poetry East, Blackbird, Poetry Northwest, Atlanta Review and Bellevue Literary Review, with poems forthcoming in Southern Humanities Review, Prairie Schooner and Stand Magazine (U.K.) among others. He has poems in Poetry after 9/11: An Anthology of New York Poets (Melville House Publications, 2002) and Visiting Walt (a Whitman anthology from the Uof Iowa P, 2003.)  He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, the poet Pui Ying Wong.  Info on his latest book is available here.

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When the World Sailed Away


Even I had no chance
To adequately describe
 
The enormity of what
Was leaving all around me—
 
Science and science fiction
Failed here as well.
 
I was left floating in the air
And the strange darkness
 
Of outer space,
lights pulsating everywhere.
 
I closed my eyes
And memories of my life
 
Paraded like chorus girls—
Look, there I am
 
Dancing on the deck
Of a cheap cruise liner,
 
Doused in the smell
Of perfume and shrimp,
 
My partner and I in love
With each other—
 
And the bald immensity
Of the sheer blue ocean.
 
 


Lovely Word
 
 
Now and then, for no reason
that can be justified by reason,
my  mind wanders to a baseball park—
the day is always cloudless
with a light that makes
the sluggers bats spark
and the pitches pray for compassion.
I stare straight out beyond
the flagpole to the city’s rim
where I imagine a man too
is scratching his head over life,
questions that overwhelm any answers—
my compatriot in confusion
I’d recognize if we ever actually met:
the friendly wave executed
while slightly back on his heels
like a center fielder, albeit the clumsier
variety, drifting back toward the ball,
drifting in the bald hope of success,
drifting, that lovely, lovely word.