Steve Kronen

An Island
July 21, 2020 Kronen Steve

An Island
–ending almost with a phrase spoken by Keats, from Cowden Clarke’s remembrances
Toward the end of the island
(a tapered
spit of sand
and ocean cusp),
I heard a bell
(a bird,
it turned out), almost as I’d heard
once, a crisp
anvil-struck knell
come from the next town over
when someone (I figured) had died
and, hip to hip,
friends must have lined benches
(salvaged from an Erie ship
foundered in the century before the last.
Sonar first described the mast
and, later, I saw a liminal
pan of the crustaceous bolts dwindled
along its side
— it was on the news
and in the papers).
Sitting like birds, they sang
(though, not like birds), haunches,
almost touching, the smart clang
out of the cupola
above the pews,
the hymnals
in each hand lit hard from the big window,
and a troop of creatures floating in the ray
going every which way,
(unlike the bubbles
of the diver)
…this way and that, and every which way.

Steve Kronen‘s most recent and forthcoming work is in Image, On the Seawall, upstreet, Hampden-Sydney Poetry Review, and One Hand Clapping (UK). The poem in this issue is from a new manuscript, Gimme That – Don’t Smite Me: New and Selected Poems. His collections are Homage to Mistress Oppenheimer (Eyewear), Splendor (BOA), and Empirical Evidence (U of Georgia). Kronen is the recipient of an NEA, Bread Loaf and Sewanee Writers’ Conferences fellowships, and three Florida Arts fellowships. His website is