L.K. Thayer



“Praises From a Tenor Sax”

like salt on a bloodsucker
recoiling, shriveling
paralyzed fits of punishing

with the sell-out
the down and out
muck and mire choir
praises from a tenor sax
and a song
you can’t let go of

fill the loving cup
and drink it dry
try to stay away
but you can’t fight
the pull
of the taffy

you get stuck in the
and you wanna

L.K. Thayer

Photo by VC Ferry – NYC




“Epiphany” by Ariana Trinneer

It is a bright Easter day
washed with the kind of light
that pierces,
bouncing off the sand
and around the edges
of my sunglasses so that I squint.
It isn’t the easiest thing,
to focus one’s eyes
intent upon the horizon.
But miracles
must be searched out these days
and blinking is just plain irresponsible.
We hover near the water’s edge
speaking in hushed
excited bursts, disciples
huddled against the wind, waiting
for our breath
to be taken away.
One boy
is paying no attention.
He spins in the golden white
of the day, squealing as the water
pinches his toes with cold,
leaping to catch a feather
which floats
prayer soft beyond
us. I have never told
him that patience
is a virtue
and he is not one to wait.
He turns, pulled by my gaze,
and rockets to my side
where he pants in silence,
finding our point of worship
upon the water
as the whale crests,

dark and mysterious.
The crowd gasps and I feel
his body curve
into the light, release.
He tugs upon my hand
with five year old zeal,

“When I die mama
I want to become part of the ocean,
because then I can be waves.”

Ariana Trinneer

Photo by VC Ferry

© 2011

“To My Father” by Ben Brandstein

Like an autumnal leaf

Gently waltzing with the wind

Here and there, until coming to rest

In a pool of water, causing the aquatic reflector

To wrinkle; I think of you and it takes some time

To remember to forget about you.

Would you be proud?

Would you praise or condemn these fingers

That feel whole when perched on a pen and not pig skin?

Cuticles stained with ink,

Trenches occasionally occupied by nylon.

Would you teach me anything significant?

I shaved with the help of magazines.

I learned how to treat a woman from the way

Clark Kent embraced Miss Lane.

The transcendent value of a dollar was taught to me

By a prepubescent entrepreneur across the street

Desperate for the missing quarters his lemonade was worth.

So what would you give me? Lessons? Gifts?

Happiness? A harmonic resonance to eradicate

These moments of dissonance?

Or perhaps your greatest gift was absence.

Instead of a young, pliable counterpart I am

Myself. My own source of instruction.

But when I am blessed with a child of my own

I will provide them with every single moment

I wish I could have had with you.

Ben Brandstein

Photograph by VC Ferry

© 2011

“Buddy” by Keven Bellows

I sometimes think the Jim he is becoming
may be the Jim who was. Buddy
swinging on a fence
around a New England clapboard
with a wide porch, where
his grandfather rocked rain or shine.

Summers in Still River away from parents–
Buddy’s happiest hours. When not
sitting with the man in the rocker,
retired by alcohol long before his time,
he was practicing his swing
with a found golf club
on the course behind the property,
scrounging balls to earn pocket change.

Always easiest on his own, Buddy thrived
in this odd company that included Emerson and Thoreau,
favorites of his wellborn grandfather,
a 19th century gentleman, who left him
an abiding affection for men of few words—
memories undiminished through eight decades.

More boy at the gate
eager for adventure,
than the grandfather he now is,
Jim’s reservoir of resilience is Buddy,
whose arrival incites the onset of summer,
lazy days lengthening, lure of tall grass,
leaves turned inside out looking for rain.

Unfailingly courteous, grateful
for love that surrounds without confining,
the solitary boy reclaims the man,
makes us comfortable on the porch,
while he makes for the fence
across an invisible lawn.

Keven Bellows

Photo by VC Ferry

© 2011