Tag / John Skoyles

TWO POEMS by John Skoyles

SPITE FENCE My neighbor forced his abutter to raze the warped and rotten fence because he didn’t want to see the sagging wood when he sat on the porch in the morning having coffee with his wife. The fence was

The List

Branches shiver as if a wand transformed them into wands themselves, the way our friends become poplars planted in their memory— Steven Clover, Lon Scott, Franco Palumbo, jeweler, banker, chef. There’s no rest from the list that grows each morning

Killer

                                     after Montale When he saw me coming from stickball swinging a broom handle, he’d call Killer from his chair on the stoop.

Coal Bin

Some witchy and slinky, ready to coo on a pillow,   others nun-like, eyes open with the wonder of a startled   sleepwalker—all bluntly bare. My uncle stashed his harem   of goddess statues in our coal bin   where