Connor Stratman: “A Drunk”

 

 

A Drunk 

I rip the basket from the lamp
and hope with the sheer force
of a tree in a tornado that you’ll
see something salvageable in the flame.
It’s been the same wick for a decade
and in that time I’ve played the game
of waving rapidly my hand over
the sparks, tempting extinction. 
At 28, I sawed the lampstand
in half and sold it in parts. 
I convinced people they needed them,
these possessions of mine, which were sacred
because I’d touched them. The profits were swallowed
and I found myself in a ghost town, thinking
I was a tourist of the living, while it was the living
touring the dead man who knew not how he came there.

 

 

About the Author: Connor Stratman lives in Dallas, TX. His books and chapbooks include Some Were Awake (plumberries, 2011), Volcano (2011/2017, Writing Knights), and An Early Scratch (Erbacce, 2010). His work has appeared in journals such as Ditch, Counterexample Poetics, Earl of Plaid, Etcetera, Backlash, Moria, Dead Snakes, and Otoliths.

 

More By Connor Stratman:

“Doug At My Age”

 

Image Credit: John Margolies “D.T.’s Liquor sign, Cheyenne, Wyoming” (1980) The Library of Congress

Connor Stratman: “Doug at My Age”

 

 

Doug at My Age 

Good Luck is chained to the bow,
frontlining this plow through the flood. 
Ay (yes), we’re singing and dancing
under the moon that draws
scythes and staples night to the air,
the fortune of lightless pastures.
Crickets and owls crow in and out
of the dreams of everyone else.
I’m glad to be gone from here, the tide
that’s always one with its own border. 
Reading the stream again, this one’s mine. 
Hydrated leaves take the water taxi
and here is some childhood again, 
borne on the backs of jagged rocks
and plenty of ivy. Again, years go
and then this thicket of solitude 
pops up again, in pictures I didn’t take. 
My shed cells are the corpse of memory. 
Lost against the gentlest possible tide, 
there’s a kiss, a game of army, broken
tractor motors, and that tunnel they say
some kid in the nineties disappeared up. 

 

About the Author: Connor Stratman lives in Dallas, TX. His books and chapbooks include Some Were Awake (plumberries, 2011), Volcano (2011/2017, Writing Knights), and An Early Scratch (Erbacce, 2010). His work has appeared in journals such as Ditch, Counterexample Poetics, Earl of Plaid, Etcetera, Backlash, Moria, Dead Snakes, and Otoliths.

 

Image Credit: “Head of a Roman Boy” second half of 2nd century A.D. Digital image courtesy of the Getty’s Open Content Program.