2 poems by Joel Harris

42 Summers

The backyard faucet
tasted of metal.
Like licking a bullet
or mouthing a crescent wrench.
We seined all day,
plodding the backwater shallows,
holding the line between us.
Till finally we could stand
and wonder at the catch.
We beat a prehistoric fish over the head
with a baseball bat,
We bled it, tail-down from a tree.
It took an axe to skin the thing
and even so, there were sparks.
We beat our chests,
imagined ourselves gods…
We never tired…
Till short of breath and drinking from
some back yard faucet
that tasted of metal.

Such kings…

And that day,
that single sweaty day,
was the whole of our Kingdom.

Love them for being women…

Do not measure
the length of days
if sadness be your mark,
nor pine over
lost love.
Think not on tragedy
or wrecks
or venom.

No

Please, be still.
Do not stir
these waters.

Think rather on the
stretch of skin that
spreads as a skein,
loosely across
the back of your hand.
Tanned,
pock-marked,
pitted and
delicious.
Think rather on that
pristine length of
memory that is your
relationship to your sisters,
know them.
Love them for being women.
(Let that suffice)
Rest easy in this.
Take comfort in such,
celebrate it.
But do not measure
the length of days
if sadness be your mark.
Do not pine over
lost love.
Think not on tragedy
or wrecks or venom.

No

Please, be still.
Do not stir
these waters.

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Published by

Jeremiah Walton

Oi ! I’m Jeremiah Walton. For the past ~3 years I’ve been bopping around the U.S. between hitchhiking + rubber tramping, running traveling bookstore Books & Shovels + indie publisher Nostrovia! Press. My focus is in-person distribution at open mics + features + busking. Word of mouth is a fulfilling & feels to be a more intimate promotional process. I’ve featured at the NYC Poetry Festival + San Francisco Lit Crawl + Snoetry Cleveland + Beast Crawl Oakland + This Lil Lit Fest + street corners across the country. There’s a handful of my books floating around the country, but most recently is “From Here Til Utopia” (Ghost City Press). Raccoons + coyotes are my companions. Hope you dig the poems, much love, thank you❤

One thought on “2 poems by Joel Harris”

  1. I love the “mouthing a crescent wrench,” it made me smile to think that I remembered what that tasted like, and that someone else apparently knew what I had forgotten. And “We seined all day” is just gorgeous evocation. Nice work.

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