Category / Issue #57 April 2016


INVENTORY   Open door, high cistern, wooden loo seat Harvesters hanging, mangle in passageway Long key in lock, block of wood dangling   Wall clock, drop-leaf table, pressure-cooker beans Seersucker tablecloth, jug of Bisto, crumbs Pink-yellow Battenburg, splashes of dark

Editor’s Note

Readers: Welcome to Plume Issue # 57 –   April. Brief, this time, thanks to my having been rather long-winded in my mediations on chess and intertwined birthday salutations to my brother M. last issue (and, thank you, all, for


My friend goes to visit his grave like someone going to his country house to plant roses. Some time ago he acquired this little homestead. Planted trees around it, and occasionally he’ll go there as if alive he could do

Two Poems

MARATHON   Jesus hears a swarm of bees beneath his porch. His television screen repeats the scene: runners blown off their lightweight frames, bystanders turned curbside amputees. Another urban cloud of smoke, the street littered with more paper. A man


She flies south to visit me though it is deep summer.   Curved in ink up her hind left shoulder—   its fine filaments splayed as though in wind-riled disarray—   a solitary plume.   *   Curved in ink—

Two Poems

De Profundis   Sometimes you are going past on a motorbike and you look up in time to see a woman who loved you hand in hand with a man you don’t know, she stretches up on tip-toe, eyes wide

Two Poems

Tails   When our tails fell off, we had nothing to wag or wave behind us, nothing to curl up or unfold, nothing to keep us honest. We tried to sew the tails back on, but they just hung limply.


        It was late in the year and late in the day, And in Sant’Agnese in Agone The light was not quite right.       So late in the year, so late in the day,          It should have been a watery amber


  Evenings when the children are fast asleep and day begins its shading to dusk,   from the shelter of our screened porch we watch their brief   transformations: small orbs blinking like unintelligible signals above the groundcover   then


Showers of snow geese.   Mirrors weren’t my friends anymore, couldn’t stand what they showed me, the changing flesh, thinning hair that used to reach my knees, the drowning of names in a mud-thick water mind   the shorter breaths.

Two Poems

Sieverts and Joules     Maybe there’s a new way to be nuclear, not using rods with their troublesome impermanent cladding, their uncoolable fuel, a new way to make less waste and reuse the waste, too, not “maybe,” this is

Bridge Thrill

After two days of TV airlifts and wheels-to-the-sky and highways sluiced by rivers, cement in chunks,   you silence the raging media—your own flood-wreck’s next. Where are the schooners to tack across the prairie,   one cumulus huff at a

Featured Selection

This month’s Featured Selection, “Blue Cocoon,” is a collaboration between Tess Gallagher and Lawrence Matsuda. The entire book (three sections), entitled Boogie-Woogie Crisscross, is the first production of Plume Editions – for more details see the Editor’s Note in this issue,

Four Reviews In Brief: Bond, …

In this month’s intallment, reviews editor Adam Tavel celebrates National Poetry Month by examining four unsung collections from 2015.               For the Lost Cathedral by Bruce Bond Louisiana State University Press $16.95, 84 pages

A Face, A Cup

  The thousand hairline cracks in an aged face match the hairline cracks in an aged cup and come from similar insults: careless, base self-absorbed gestures from a younger face, cruel and fine. Bang! Each disturbed trace deepens to a