Father Gentle

I entered your bedroom that Sunday morning
when no one was looking, saw my mother
in the middle of the floor and you on her,
winking at me from behind. Went blind,
became a column of air. Sang snippets
of vomit-confusion within our assumed
sweetness. Remembered then forgot
my name during the sin-fired breakfast
below. I would have danced for you,
you magnificent creatures, but my feet
became stone in that claw-breast moment.
Scared but not for one moment afraid,
I took the vision straight on, clung
to my toys, silence and paraphenilia.
Played with lead soldiers, rabbits, dogs,
robots, cartoons, books and whatever
available animals existed or, not yet
conceived (the fox carcass in the woods
now excited me), conceived my own—
slept with snakes slipping from throat to
belly to mind’s laryngized voice: realized
the sky rapes clouds in open misery birds
rape air in open misery trees rape earth
in open misery rats rape corn in open misery—
none dancing, all screeching, as half-a-mule
down the road ants gang-rape the weakest
giant they can find under leaves for their
children’s children’s children’s sake.


Photography © Glenn Bowie

Photography © Glenn Bowie


After a rather extended and varied second childhood in New Orleans, Matt Dennison’s work has appeared in Rattle, Bayou Magazine, Redivider, Natural Bridge, The Spoon River Poetry Review and Cider Press Review, among others.

Glenn Bowie is a published poet, lyricist and photographer from the Boston area. He also owns and operates an elevator company that supplies custom-built elevators for clients from New England to Hollywood. Author of two poetry and photograph collections (Under the Weight of Whispers and Into the Thorns and Honey) on Big Table Publishing, he donates all profits from his books to various charities for the homeless and local animal shelters. Glenn is also the official photographer for the Newton Writing and Publishing Center.


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