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  November/December 2012
volume 9 number 2
-table of contents-
  home   (archived)
  featured poets
  David Cravens
  Ivan Jenson
  Walter Ruhlmann
  Maryann Russo
  John Saunders
  David Scriven
  Apryl Skies
  Julia Stein
  mailing list
John Saunders December 2012



photo by james barros

    John Saunders is a founder member of the Hibernian Writers' Group. His collections are After the Accident (Lapwing Press, 2010) and Chance (New Binary Press, 2013). One of three featured poets in Measuring, Dedalus New Writers, 2012, he was shortlisted in the 2012 inaugural Desmond O'Grady Poetry Competition and is a 2014 Pushcart Nominee. John's poems have appeared in journals in Ireland, the UK and America, on many online sites, and been included in The New Binary Press Anthology of Poetry, The Stony Thursday Book, The Scaldy Detail 2013, Conversations with a Christmas Bulb (Kind of a Hurricane Press, 2013), The Poetry of Sex, (Penguin, 2014), Fatherhood Anthology (Emma Press UK, 2014), and The Fate of Berryman Anthology (Arlen House, 2014).



I Listen to Joni Mitchell on my iPod at a Science Lecture

It is mind-blowing to know
we are thirteen billion
year old carbon elements
of primordial universe
banging around this planet,
some of us on a trajectory
to Yasgur’s Farm,
to pay homage to the stars.
…We are stardust,
we are golden,
caught in the devil’s bargain….*

copyright 2012 John Saunders



Sixty Nine Lines of Memory

In the West End Hotel,
embarrassed by newness,
that sad story of your dress.
I told it from my point of view.
Now in the shade of my life
you are as real as my future,
round moon of smiles.
The first time we met,
we unnoticed each other
behind the agenda
of a business meeting.
You fingered your diary
in its burgundy leather livery
into which you recorded your dates,
neat Xs of safe sex,
when we escaped our lives.
You joked about money,
how we coped, alimony,
retail therapy, foreign holidays.
You gave and received with love,
taught me how to receive and give,
let me enter the deepest
part of you, unfold secrets
of shame, fear and mistakes
like when you fucked across
twenty States of America,
every State a different name
or that time with your sister.
And you shared knowledge,
mastered the techniques,
your fantasies spilling into mine.
You said I would never
be loved as much ever.
You taught me appreciation
of fine wines, Grand Cru,
Appellation Controlee,
the perfect cultured couple
living in the bubble
of our secret days
stolen from someone else,
our pleasure bottled-
waiting to burst.
When nervous you fidgeted,
chaffed thumbs irritated,
like when he asked questions,
behaved as if suspicious.
New years day,
the landscape freezer foggy,
silent in our warm nest
body heat diffusing.
Baumes de Venise,
the swing of its name,
sweet stickiness on our lips,
the twist of your curls,
your smooth hand on my chest.
Your scent is still fresh.
Our ending was trauma,
life without each other, sore,
your cries of bitter lost love,
my escape into words,
hiding in the rooms of form.
I want to hear you,
want you to be here, lady of smiles.
I had you and lost you,
am still losing.
Thunderstorms of memory
fall like hailstones,
stinging, hurting, cold,
always hurting cold.

copyright 2012 John Saunders