Sunday, January 3, 2010

Sonnets for Lily Yukon - 3. Star Light, Star Bright

The stars you thought you could count on as
recently as Friday 11/21/91, Lily... well those stars have
        drowned like spooned
sugar dissolved in steamed milk:
another headache, & what are you left with but cold sweats &
        symptoms of

night blindness; & what's left to eat anyway?
Ice & snow, a few decimal points left over from Mr Infinity's
        breakfast, a
31st birthday cake crumbling with frostbite—its sugary roses,
        they're teeth breaking off biting down on an ice cube;

No one says it doesn't hurt like a mouthful of ice caps,
this grind; & what's left in the fridge?
2 beers, a map of the Northern Hemisphere's night sky in
        winter, a
paperback Leibniz wrapped in foil for freezing—not to mention
a motorized voice
(& it's echoing oddly staccato & to the tune of The Queen of
        Night's Aria), bellowing
Happy Birthday & Last Call

Jack Hayes
© 1990-2009

11 comments:

Dave King said...

This is brilliant stuff. It both hits you as you read and then there's an after-shock as it soaks in - okay, maybe that last is down to my mental powers slowing-up, but I think not, this time. There are depths to this. Strong stuff for the new year!

John Hayes said...

Hi Dave: Thanks! I've read your blog enough to know that your mental powers are in fine shape--& I very much appreciate your comments & support.

willow said...

Ah, the days when I thought 31 was old. Powerful stuff, John.

John Hayes said...

Hi Willow: Thanks! I think 31 is an age that seems oldest when you actually are 31.

Pearl said...

Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful!

Pearl

John Hayes said...

Hi Pearl: Thanks for stopping by--& very glad you liked this!

Karen said...

I agree with Dave. There is so much here - much more than first read. Excellent, John.

John Hayes said...

Hi Karen: Thanks--very happy that these poems have generated enthusiasm!

Poetikat said...

I think Robert Service would have got into these actually.
Was there really a Lily, or is she just a figment?

John Hayes said...

Hi Kat: Actually, all the people in my poems are "real," in that I have a person or persons in mind when I write. Sometimes, the characters are a bit of a composite, & my sense now, almost 20 years after writing these is that Lily Yukon was based on two women who were very different in most ways.

Poetikat said...

Very interesting. If I were to do the same thing it would come off as a "33 Faces of Steve" sort of piece.