Vincent Katz

Four Poems from Barge

It feels so good that it’s this year, not last
A wind whipping rain seasonal but unexpected


Just like a poem rose the building
Pure in the evening, its modern angles
Highlighted by a halo of glowing cloud
Backed by an evening sky with just
The palest touch of blue

A beautiful homeless drag queen sitting
On the sidewalk, matching that other
Homeless queen, dressed in pink
Every day, even in the dead of winter
Sitting with her things in the same spot

And the people in the evening speaking
Such sweet things to one another
“Thank you so much for dinner”
“Oh, it was just a pleasure”
The energy is all and nothing

This poem is a machine for writing
Poems, and as I think that I realize
It will one day break down and stop
Writing poems, but that day I will
Find another machine and friend


I have walked in these canyons all my life
And never realized how to get to the peaks

Now I realize that I am where I belong
Although I have not changed my place

The oddly familiar sounds and feelings were
also nauseating, depressing, disheartening

Then the viewers heard the shattering
sounds and felt the sickening concussion

The moon is still in the sky
And there’s a bunch of turkey buzzards overhead

Nothing to be overheard but the buzz
Of machinery, children’s voices, birds

You are dragged back to city’s nerves
But the greater part persists in nature’s glow

Pool reflections on the umbrella, lilies and hydrangea
By the side of the barn

A few days ago, the beach summoned
Energies of long-buried poetries


But what I mean most of all
Is stop —

Morning sun through poplars
Later, dead lily stalks catch
     Perfect strokes
Small frog floats in pond grass
All in the end is being there
For that one now needs it

To be always in the present
Even when that present is dying

People die in ponds —
     Boats turn over
A solid blue, green-edged, hovers
Silken marsh grass waves
At day’s end light in pine tops

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