autumnal :: choleric

astound me. seeding
a presence. in order

to break, intercise
each layer. fear

counted like. cards
fallen from hands

this. the most
careful story

blown-flat. pile of

moth wings & ash--
stay away. he said

and it isn't even
time. wait for

autumn. brown-out
eyes. amethyst. ripped

fluttering and it
isn't even night

held. holding us
at arms distance

hollowed. where
we crease
1.   three damaged seasons, voices

against the image of goldenrod
i apply my dereliction to you

untying knots of fountainspray
backward dunes

unraveling after we read
the gaping verb muscular node

asterisk a planet if
and this "if" of splendor

sinks back into its vertebrae
where we crimp

burgeoning gardenias singular
helix of whitewash and ice give me

sacrificial arteries your eyelashes
brimming with winter

slender sores of the finite
these were blood and bark

slanting gouged labeled
yellow bruise as "dying"

peels climbing interruption
the purest blank

speck of tongue sparkling
as consciously

on my cheek in shame
and what we do--

ever-filtered gallows
you and i parabolic

artificial mappings of
copper-plated skies


I.  face down

blithely you thrust
category: container blue
lid to the serene sepulcher

door threshold hearth
twirled instant of
two breaths not mingling but

sideways shattering
i cannot launder silence
chapped gashed leaping

cryptic flung at dusk
fire in place of who
leaves them for you

as if perfect and kindled?
glittering in nitrous looms
every chair every table is not

abutting clay-red burn here
you are quartz and softer
incinerated by some wall

II.  wound up, through

opal hook of space
fingers contort with
traffic but to get there

enzymes resound in light
printing blandness streets
leaking their pulses whir

pathways puddles
some outer beam resisting
hovering as wave and particle

what happens is
not happening fourteen fathoms down
say until

concentric seams between these
garbled currencies
sew themselves reflexive ponds

creek-worn against violet
dangling in vermilion charred
you hissing the not-blood of “I am”

3. Interludes

glances in
oxides windfall
peripheral haze zenith
swabbing you blind
like living room
crosstype catacomb
feasts I am splintering
you in tow paperveined
in the most common
shrug lead me wet-

ways starting from
ash beige clover
fingertips moving
morningsilent lead
to yours alternation
a scythe cowled by
knee and navel under
coral carapace censuring
your breath somehow
we travel mirrors

swim the horizon
brittle morpheme
shift becomes
euphoric taut
something like a window

accumulating you in breeze
but made of grass
wisteria coarse seedlings
commas give way letting
emptiness this found

light shutter close
                      more funnel than eye


4.  synchronic

all nouns of the world be
sleeve trodden
or ablutionary ocean underwhelming
your ruin bland oats alive in your hair

conifer & east orange mirage bring this
vehicular moment caught
in descent ascent
calamity against white fin

pick some electric entanglement
to dwell on: hubcap unexpected shrub-wisp
of flower name it for
your speaking tongue but hiding calyx

spaced & from your body
because it already happened once
ask yourself commensurately
if the blacktop is how you remember it

what's lacking pistil stigmata filament
fireshadow without foreplay
when you say hurry
mojave curative venous & anthropic

this firefly scrim stars all
into you like a kickback and ride
the ablated wreckage we share ash
forehead open glowing burn

athenic arrow skimming
bent into curve of earlobe
euthanizing soft woods
puddles spoken planks

residual trance carved coagulus
yellow-white bride born
guessing you & i meres of one another
you and I aberrant

bitter cactus tongues
in garden in sounding siren


mackenzie carignan is a PhD student at University of Illinois at Chicago where she teaches creative writing and literature classes.  Her poetry has been published in Hayden's Ferry Review, The Chaffin Journal,  Liberty Hill Poetry Review, Into the Teeth of the Wind, Bluesky Review, Sniper Logic, Square One, and has upcoming publications in Alligator Juniper, Another Chicago Magazine, and RIEN's Evening of Odds.  She has also been nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2005 and lives two blocks from Wrigley Field with her husband, Brian and son, Eliot.

scott glassman lives in Palmyra, NJ and works for a medical testing company. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in The Iowa Review, The Argotist, Unpleasant Event Schedule, Illuminations, Epicenter, Cranky, Sentence, South Carolina Review, 42Opus, The Cortland Review, and others.