Distant Sunrise in Malaga // At the Loggia // Jazz

These poems together won third place for the 2017 Robert A. Boit Writing Prize for poetry. (Click images to enlarge.)


Nicholas Matthews, "Distant Sunrise in Malaga"


Nicholas Matthews, "At the Loggia"


Nicholas Matthews, "Jazz"

In Ghostlier Demarcations, Keener Sounds
a distant sunrise in Málaga
Someone dreams on my shoulder—
Wisps of colored memories glowing in the dark,
Drowning in the hum of turbines,
Dissolving into clouds I cannot see
Until the city lights blink at me,
Quick as the flashes of forgotten days,
Fading into the dreamlike hues that
Bend around the horizon—
We pitch forward, she turns,
Morning’s curves wash away,
—Brighter darkness

“Figura Serpentina”
at the Loggia dei Lanzi
The man with the guitar plucks mellow notes of purple brushstrokes
Orange half-chewed meat falls through two slabs of rustic bread onto the time washed
cobblestone between two brown shoes
A tour-guide calls a flock of tourists under his umbrella through which everything is red
The sun is there too of course, casually coating the plaza with another layer of whiter
A young artist sits across from me, obfuscated by the seasons
Between us you can see two of the infinitely many perspectives that surround the
Rape of the Sabine Women, spiraling upward through the ages
And onto his sepia card stock.

“Jazz”
The worn stool, ill-lit bar and air pollution
Other people with their heads so high up and
Ice falling off the blazing painted corners of steel
jazz
Us meanwhile experiencing it mouthing the words
The night and stars fork pulling us out of the
darkness
And far into the epileptic evening flames
You think next time around
When suddenly the menace of your prayer falls
Baby… she is close
To relaxing the cruel discussion…
White garment falling off drunk
Exalting the tide-exposed garden
Time, progress and good sense abolished
Expecting last month to be more absolute
You leaving the atocha station…
Blind dog.
It was fuzz on the passing light.

 

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