rob mclennan – 3 Poems

rob mclennan

3 Poems

January 1

                                     In your language, there is illusion, but there is no hope,

                                     In hope, there is illusion.

                                     And in illusion, there is the stuff of language.
                                               – nathalie stephens

this is the begun but then it is
/ the long hangover

an unsteady cough

i am entering into
an unsteady gaze

of nothing

new ottawa winter, sunrise,
the year extant

an authority of pinstripes,


an entry of north
an entry of thinking

the thaw that held us last night all
& then this morning

a 5am blinding light

when i returned, i might not leave
all day

would you love me as
i am

archibald lampman
is dead

& so his kate,
his figures in stained glass

so graceful
in other fields

a single
a single-made

what you cant

a bullet

January 8

                                  Stand up! Stand
                                  Suzanne is walking by.
                                            – Leonard Cohen

it happens

writing, “suzanne wears a leather coat”

the long touch of granite is lost

is not lost

there is wet snow all along the entranceway

her boots are never clean

in the prairies last week, threatened wind chill
of fifty below

& who says ottawa is cold
clifton joseph on elgin street from toronto

where he has the lake
& so much further south

in the prairies, where there is nothing
to stop the wind
or slow it down

from the rocky mountains to sudbury
or sioux lookout

a leather coat in this weather
at least it can break from the wind

did suzanne wear anything else i wonder
on ste catharines street or the isle of hydra

i am losing track of my contemporaries
on a saturday morning in the rideau centre
waiting for my daughter & her mother

suzanne her memory is marble
it hasnt changed in eons

not even erosion can touch her

sing me to sleep; i am four days
remembering nothing

the tim hortons coffee is too hot still
to drink

what happens

lay down your marble tea; this is not
about death

some things forget us, perfectly

in time

January 10

                                  Sometimes a surface lands on the surface,
                                  a pelt on bone.
                                            The inaudible resides over
                                            the word you crave.
                                            – Elizabeth Robinson

a sympathetic mode, between here
& the east

sun rises, sets

quitting, closing, moving to bagdad
, whats all this then

a shift in some

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