Past & Present: Poetry by Stephen Mead





All the pans we placed in this leaky place

the rainy day of moving in

have long since overflowed, rusted, gone green.


Then why do I keep them, these tins that,

calloused, benevolent, firm, your palms washed,

scooping locks, lukewarm, up, down, back

up to soak a beard kiss-thick?


It tickled, was a trademark. I mean

is, is in that photo of you dozing,

bear-secure, on the steering wheel

of our old psychedelic, fender-bashed van.


Jesus, it was something, our first year,

trial and error, abruptly superseded by search,

seize, some judo movie on the tube

kicked over when, fists ramming, the militia——


We hadn’t done nothin’. I don’t understand

mongers, their language romancing war’s

allegory, dependent

on which side can leave less.


What math is so pathological?

Where is the diction? Twisted

At birth?


Looks good on paper, the blue prints drawn,

planned methods to quarantine,

an evil concentrated but

on the outside. Thus, to carry out

the hypothesis, pawns are ordered,

individuals reminiscent of pans, these,

sieves now eaten empty by weather,


my head, an

this is the way


the world ends

damn them

not with

only I want

a bang

by law


to embrace you

a birth cry

where I still can’t

A resident of NY, Stephen Mead is a published artist, writer, maker of short-collage films and sound-collage downloads.  If you are at all interested and get the time, Google Stephen Mead and the genres of either writing, art, or both, for links to his multi-media work.


Poems curated by FORTH poetry editors.

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