©Jennifer Davidson Marshall

Stone Soup Servings is a regular series for Oddball Magazine that features upcoming performers at Stone Soup Poetry, the long-running spoken word venue in the Boston area that has recently partnered with Oddball Magazine. Stone Soup Poetry meets from 8-10 p.m. every Monday at the Out of The Blue Art Gallery at 106 Prospect Street with an open mike sign-up at 7:30 p.m.

This Monday, Stone Soup closes out 2013 with Patrick S., who will be debuting his first full-length poetry book, Her Name Was Not Brighton, which he describes as “sort of a magical realism romance novella in free verse.” This only scratches the surface, so we recommending both hearing the poems performed and purchasing the book, which will first be available this coming Monday. What follows is an opening poem from the book to invoke your curiosity.


Negative Space

“You only have one shadow?” she said. “That’s so sad.”
“No,” I told her, “it depends on the number of lights.”
It’s different where she’s from.
Her shadows aren’t places on the ground
she’s blocking the light from reaching.
Her light doesn’t work that way,
and each of her shadows is itself, separately.
She told me that her oldest shadow
started to happen the day her pet dog stopped being a dog.
It became a butterfly
and it wasn’t sure whether or not it was still her pet.
Lots of things become butterflies where she’s from.
Her second shadow appeared the first time she saw the rain stop.
She had seen it rain, and not rain, and start to rain,
but the rain stopping was different.
Raindrops where she’s from aren’t themselves, separately, like shadows,
they’re places where the clouds block the dry from reaching.
Sometimes she’ll forget where she is
and ask someone for a bowl of dry.
She tried eating a Do-Not-Eat silica packet.
She said it reminded her of dry, but it wasn’t the same thing.
I don’t know why there’s still male and female,
where she’s from,
when so much of everything else isn’t a thing
or it’s a realer thing than ours.
She asked if I would be happier if she reproduced through spores.
I told her that would really depend on the spores.
Then we kissed, I think.