Sterling Warner: “Anthropomorphic Junkyard”

Anthropomorphic Junkyard

Frigidaires, washers, dryers & sinks
lay side by side, on top, or beneath

water heaters, ovens, bar-b-cue pits
& microwaves—some of them

waste away, relenting a lifetime
without celebrity or a past beyond

energy efficiency—utility taken
for granted unless natural gas lines break,

electric coals burn out, or freon pipes
leak; gloved hands load imperfect devices

in truck beds, trailers & trunks— toss them
sans ceremony: brusquely, rudely, callously

smashed by buckets, crushed under backhoe
wheels, picked up and dropped in heaps

that creak as sunlight heats & expands metal
wail as wind passes through hanging glass doors

sheltering rats day & night, providing refuge
from feral dogs & cats always on the chase

untamed creatures appreciative of blazing sky shade,
predatory animal protection, a rain & snow sanctuary

before transfer stations load rubble & dispose it
in empty asbestos mines at the earth’s core.

About the Author: A Washington-based author, educator, and Pushcart nominee for poetry, Warner’s works have appeared in many international literary magazines, journals, and anthologies such as  Street Lit., The Ekphrastic ReviewAnti-Heroin Chic, The Fib Review,  and Sparks of Calliope. Warner also has written seven volumes of poetry, including Without Wheels, ShadowCat, Memento Mori: A Chapbook Redux, Edges, Rags & Feathers, Serpent’s Tooth, and Flytraps (2021)—as well as. Masques: Flash Fiction & Short StoriesCurrently, he writes, hosts virtual poetry readings, and enjoys retirement. 

Image Credit: Chase Dimock “Desert Junk Art” (2021)

Sterling Warner: “Ebb & Flow”

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Ebb & Flow

I.
Amber beer bottles
back floating on turbid tides
some corked carrying messages
most reduced to glass shards,
razor sharp edges rounded
by the selfsame sand thrust
over rocks, against cliff faces,
around feet wading shoals.

II.
Bull whip kelp wash ashore
after tempests, sunburned beach combers
pop bulb-like heads before gathering
long tentacles, cracking them
like riding crops or cat-o’-nine tails,
flagellating sandcastles & sunbathers
knowing pliable algae’d harmlessly flog
friends & objects of their joyful aggression.

III.
Children tip-toe through flotsam jetsam
scrawl their names in the wet shoreline
place star fish in piles surrounding them
with sea urchins & periwinkle shells
as waves roll in, their creations melt
into a watery fray & they scream
as salty ice hands clutch youthful ankles,
& horseshoe crabs pierce naked feet.

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About the Author: A Washington- based author, poet, educator, word-lover, Sterling Warner’s works have appeared in dozens of literary magazines, journals, and anthologies such as  Ekphrastic ReviewA Washington-based author, educator, and Pushcart nominee for poetry, Warner’s works have appeared in many international literary magazines, journals, and anthologies such as  Street Lit., The Ekphrastic ReviewAnti-Heroin Chic, The Fib Review, The Vita Brevis Poetry Magazine, and Sparks of Calliope. Warner also has written seven volumes of poetry, including Without Wheels, ShadowCat, Memento Mori: A Chapbook Redux, Edges, Rags & Feathers, Serpent’s Tooth, and Flytraps (2022)—as well as. Masques: Flash Fiction & Short Stories. Currently, he writes, hosts virtual poetry readings, and enjoys retirement. 

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Image Credit:  Chase Dimock “Seagulls at Sunset” (2020)