Thursday Nov 23

GoodanKevin Kevin Goodan is the author of four collections of poetry, including Let The Voices. Currently, he is Associate Professor at Lewis-Clark State College, and on faculty for the Rainier Writers Workshop at Pacific Lutheran University. Click here to read Sean Thomas Dougherty's review of Let The Voices, featured in this month’s issue of Connotation Press.

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From ANAPHORA: AN ELEGY


We who have our flourishings
our little moments of shine
here, where the roaring is
the purge of what is granted
when heat is the translation
of some common god, when we
sway grateful for flame
in the way we yearn to hold
it all, feel it all, good
because I am something that will
burn in the violence of the
beginning of tomorrow
which embers down the home
we are calling to it is
November the bright book says
we belong

Sway November watertower bright
where Rosabelle believed
fuck Joe Grady fuck your dog
dead as the Houdini you rode in on
goodbye Scott goodbye Doug
How clean it all how sweet it all
burns in the call-sign Kilo
where my cousin Jimmy hangs
yearning for the word: belong
can’t pick the locks goodbye
Harry the book the flames bid
singing fuck singing home
see my Houdini flies

Drop-zone November this is Houdini
believe Joe Grady picks the locks
that echo tomorrow dog where Jimmy
belongs god not no watertower flame
that will burn because we roar
with violence granted we fuck and hang
because we are so good I am Charlie
I am Rosabelle call-sign Kilo goodbye
someone cut my cousin down please
goodbye goodbye cut him the fuck down

My cousin ain’t no Belle
I said he’s just a flame
likes a good rose I said
Jimmy took out his knife
cut a hunk of rope said
you can’t get out of this one
Houdini someone’s gonna pay
tomorrow I can feel it good
well I said beginning to ember
violence is how we belong
when we have no home
quit your roaring he said
here is where I flourish
but your cousin is gonna sway

I need a call-sign says Jimmy
so you know it’s me trying
to get in touch I might be
out of range for a while
how about Fuck Dog I say
and he says something official
like for airplanes and rocketships
what about Marshall he says
and I say Jimmy you ain’t never
going that far this is where
you and I belong home he says
making a loop of rope and
throwing it over a beam here
he says get up on that chair
and let’s test this all out

Some die and some
want to die those
are the facts
Jimmy says tossing
the rope from the
watertower none of
us are but a flame
fuck off says Mary
God’s on my side
not if you keep
screwing those breeds
says Jimmy shut up
says Annette you’re
half a one Jimmy
I say which half
you gonna hang?

Falling snow begins to shine
November Jimmy tucked into
the ground Joe Grady flame
I take a selfie at the watertower
the warning light strobbing
and I think about god how
untranslatable his actions are
to the yearnings of our
little moments when we sway
grateful to feel it all
tomorrow and when we return to the
beginning of our calling
and remember the flourishings
and write them in a book
we say home is what is granted
and yet I am here
in the methed-out ghost-town
to which our childhoods
will always belong