When I Go Out and Then Come Back

by Guy Kettelhack
Wild Poetry Forum
Honorable Mention, January 2018
Judged by C. Wade Bentley


When I go out
and then come back
with my psyche’s sack
as packed with the city

as all of the rest of me,
I’m coming back to New York
of course. Like the mane
is the horse, andouille

would not be but for pork,
and I am made out of New York,
not just in it. I’m a pure-grained
example of what New York

does to the unwary soul
in that famed New York minute.
It swallows you whole.
Even my iPhone colludes

in the business of keeping me
conscious of this, block to block.
When without mercy I’m shunted
from corner to curb in Manhattan

and seize up inside
from the shock, my iPhone
reliably counsels:
‘press home and unlock.’

Since I’m always and already
home, pressing home doesn’t
ever require a key. I press home
and unlock when I know there was

never a lock to begin with –
just me and the city and me
in the city and me as the city
and . . .


“ . . . my psyche’s sack/ as packed with the city . . .”—wonderful. Skillful use of sounds and repetition throughout. --C. Wade Bentley

  • May 2019 Winners

    • First Place

      I think of the colour purple
      by Alison Armstrong-Webber
      The Waters

      Second Place

      Swimming in Twilight
      by Peter Halpin
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Third Place

      In another country with strangers
      by Greta Bolger
      The Waters

  • April 2019 Winners

    • First Place

      Furiously Overcome by Stars
      by Guy Kettelhack
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Second Place

      Ides of March
      by Rachel Green
      The Write Idea

      Third Place

      Natural History
      by Antonia Clark
      The Waters