Ars Poetica #7

by Tim Blighton
Desert Moon Review
Honorable Mention, February 2010
Judged by Dorianne Laux and Joseph Millar


The unraveling is slow: under red cellophane, black
birds weave around themselves; punctuation
strung together without words; the patterns

dissolve into street lamps and bug zappers,
stuttering and angry ghosts
trapped in their own vaults. Dusk,

a deep sealing breath, brings a bouquet
of bubbles, stars and debris to the surface. Because,
poetry is any quiet night

translated by those who have only hammers and bells:
every firefly strung through the dandelion seed
like fallen Christmas lights; every sparrow dissolved

into a bat, like a bicycler signaling; every cicada
returning from the industry of mating to lay
its labor inside thinly-cut wood: over

and over, the batches will nestle in the ink of sleep, until
years later—after each creator is consumed,
perhaps, by a bird made flesh from the night—small

tunnels will burst open, nymphs rise
out, crawl into undergrowth whose roots
they’ve fed upon for years, and molt into song.



  • January 2019 Winners

    • First Place

      How the Wind Works
      by Alison Armstrong-Webber
      The Waters

      Second Place

      Sleep Walker
      by Brenda Levy Tate
      PenShells

      Third Place

      The Woman Who Grew up in My House Finds Me on Facebook and Comes to Take a Look Around
      by Antonia Clark
      The Waters

  • December 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Tires
      by Kenny A. Chaffin
      Babilu

      Second Place

      Scouring Pots While the World Ends
      by Elizabeth Koopman
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Third Place

      Poetry in the Cultural Revolution
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Waters