k  e  v  i  n  f  i  t  z  g  e  r  a  l  d


Travelers  become  pilgrims  in  deserted  and   fallen  worlds.
Midway through my journey,  on a steep pass over an  angry
sea,  a  thicket  of  vultures enwreathed me. I grew fearful and
looked backward. As I did, towers of glass sprouted from the
sea to form  a gleaming metropolis. Droves of dreams behind
windows  swarmed  over  a  festooned  bridge to shuffle from
counting house to paper mill.  Iron  horses  ground the coffee
gears of forgetfulness.  The  present  surpassed  the  past  in a
pantomime that abhorred withered boredom. I, too, wandered
among  the  kinetic  shops  of  illusion. The  municipal queen
—an  imposture—   sat  ravishingly upon   an  ornate  throne
of metallic  serpents,  studying  me with  eyes  of  smoke. “O
last man,” she said, “you shall encounter tranquility but only
after  you have sidled  in solitude across seas of burning marl.
However, because  you  have  reached  this  isle  of mirage, I
shall grant you the repast of oblivion.”

Wild Old Lee

In lone hallways of smudged light, strewn paper, and debris
shuffled  the  can-crusher in  disheveled  drug-store Chinese
slippers, muttering under his breath. “This has all happened
before, it’s all  just  a  matter  of  time  until…until the cycle
repeats  itself,” he would say, drunk with eternity, hack of  a
laugh  sputtering  into  wheeze  that rarely cleared his throat.
Coptic   castaway   in   a  polyglot  shack,  he   was  all   but
aesthetically null & void. He  would  beckon  me  and say in
unshaven  drawl,  spittle  gathered  on  his  lip,   “You  know,
you're  free  to   choose  as  you  wish,  but  realize  this,  my
boy… that  once  you’ve  chosen and acted, it’s destiny, it’s
fate, it was meant to happen.”


Ships in the Distance

Once I  simply  wanted  to.  A  day  spent was a day lived.
Rush and flow greet each swell. One must wait and will it,
then need and feel it—otherwise it will not occur. I sought
the  hollow  sill  beyond  the  stress fractured and firetower
vigil,  beyond  the  swill  marionettes  jockeying  with spat
tacks.   They   said   drivel  would,  the  politics  of  driving,
potent  cocktails,  but  they  never  did.  Only in facing that
vast  stretch,  then  the shore, did the infected light of being
become becoming.

KEVIN FITZGERALD's work has appeared in Octopus, 88, Prosodia, VeRT and elsewhere. His reviews have appeared in Rain Taxi and First Intensity. Furniture Press published his serial poem triangle shirtwaist fire. He holds an MA in Poetics from the New College of California. After sojourns in the Bay Area and New York City, he now keeps it real in Baltimore. Some more of his online work can be found here: octopus magazine poetic inhalation & flashpointmag