Two poems


your fragrant hair glistening
in parking garage light
is the city that surrounds you
the way I want it to.

or at least before burning
I would like to bathe
the whole cold concrete city
in its light,
like fire curling orange over a tide of cold milk
but I could not walk calmly
with your body.


the killing air

in one solemn shadow a noxious galaxy can sleep,
in one tangled head of hair a stranger’s soul can catch fire,
in one tree a whole unborn forest can roar like a waterfall,
in one spine a stack of notes can jangle like a pile of keys,
in one spellbound instant a clashing of conversing faces can be observed,
in one second the hands placed on the bar can turn to sheets of music,
in one fetid apocalypse eternity can be made a joke,
in the swinging of lamps above a restaurant eyelids can be painted to look like moth’s wings,
and idiots made to lose their sense of wonder.
at times I am too alive for this planet, and the whooshing of summer traffic
makes me cry tears of thick blood
that land on the sidewalk like melting pennies.
I hear the wood of forests gasp with brutal, inane hunger when I walk by,
and the nurse who attends me at night
comes in the shape of a polar bear.
I yearn for a music intense enough to steal my spirit
from the curve of earth, but the beat falls like a bowl
and spins on the floor with a tormented metallic noise.
I have made an effort to remain incoherent for fear of startling you

Luke Buckham is a prolific contributor to Spread.