Two Poems from Don Kloss
Upon Her Leaving, I Think
With a pinhole camera I try to photograph the magpie
but it flies off against the thunder of the afternoon
and clouds the color of dusk. The wind
shears gainst the outstretched wings as it sails
out of sight to the West. She leaves me here alone
with my thoughts and my collections of natural
things: fossils and insects and feathers and old
dry bones, memories of other summers, other falls
boxed and catalogued, chaos otherwise contained.
I want the image of her the way that I want these
artifacts. I want to hold them close, to pull them
from a drawer when I need to remember: Coleoptera,
Lepidoptera, Phylum Arthropoda, Pica pica- hidden
trohpies in an otherwise empty corner of a clammy
basement on an afternoon filled with the silence of the skies.
I will bang my muddy boots together, shake the muck
from the soles before I step back into the study,
place the camera back on the shelf among the field
guides and storage trays and dusty arrow heads.
There will be other days and other birds to capture.
(Previously published by Chantarelle's Notebook)
These fingers tell lies,
never reveal secrets,
hide the truth as if behind
a carnival mask.
Ask me about a fight,
I cannot elaborate-
tears and screaming,
throwing of objects.
She bruises easily
like a grape or a banana-
blood rises to the surface,
skin turns purple-black.
I didn't do it. Not this time.
Don Kloss is a native Ohioan living in New Jersey. He believes that poetry, like music, is akin to religion. When not writing he is tangled up in outdoor pursuits like camping and fishing. He is in love with his kayak and grilled shrimp.