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Poetry Summer 2022    fiction    all issues

Cover of Poetry Summer 2022


Joanne Monte
& other poems

Holly York
Still When I Reach for the Leash
& other poems

Anne Marie Wells
Catholicism Still Lingers in a Concrete Poem
& other poems

D.T. Christensen
Coded Language
& other poems

Laura Faith
& other poems

Abigail F. Taylor
Winter in Choctaw
& other poems

Natalie LaFrance-Slack
& other poems

Nicole Sellino
iii. moving, an interruption
& other poems

Gilaine Fiezmont
In Memoriam / Day of the Dead
& other poems

Sheri Flowers Anderson
On Being A Widow
& other poems

RJ Gryder
& other poems

William S. Barnes
to hatch
& other poems

Suzannah Van Gelder
& other poems

Sam Bible-Sullivan
The Dying Worker’s Soliloquy
& other poems

Hills Snyder
Eclipse (July 4, 2020)
& other poems

Lauren Fulton
Birth Marks
& other poems

David Sloan
& other poems

Nancy Kangas
Dry Dock Cranes of Brooklyn Navy Yard
& other poems

Noreen Graf
In Attendance
& other poems

Jim Bohen
Nothing Tea
& other poems

Thomas Baranski
Let us name him dread and look forward
& other poems

Writer's Site

Hills Snyder

Eclipse (July 4, 2020)

resin elbows on the arm rest

the king of cowboy chords on the radio

we’ve just been out on 60 West with

two tuna sandwiches and three beers

at a concrete roadside table

painted turquoise, what

fifty years ago?

its chipped and brindled surface

a map of some place that is trying to exist

pine sap lesions under

twisted cedars and a towering lament.

a thousand points of litter

scattered by previous pilgrims

we sit among them

wishing for large plastic bags.

monumental clouds

cumuli suggestions of hope

outline a fleeting dignity.

a straining Garryowen shatters love of country

before hanging on Lincoln’s lip

a footling stogey of disrespect.

no one sees it fall.

a granite façade runs with tears

in each a grain of salt suspended

as the head of state claims rain.

we open the third beer

love of country is back and pulls in

unloading a family setting up picnic.

in the twinkling of an eye

that phrase like a faded label

on the discarded soup can at my feet.

don’t know if it’s cream of mushroom

or potato.

the words are torn and partially obscured

as am I.


It was the year love broke everyone

we were there

dancing under that unmeasured arc

corrosive rain dripping round the edges

a perimeter we dared not expose

it was safety of a sort.

On all fours we dreamt dizzy fishtails

guzzled in mud

we zigged

zagging was next

but we did not know that.

We would later lay down

next to owners of toaster ovens

with enough gumption and schlock

to scorch a circle of dry land.

There was just room enough for shattering finery

finery from a world that made and made and made

itself in the image of some Darwinian malt shoppe

heavy crème

delight oozing from pale lips

thick white dollops

that dripped and dripped and dripped

defining the ninth illusion we were always hearing about.

Some clownish heel-clicking slug

with a grin we could have wiped the pasture with

introduced itself with handshakes and teeth.

Then, someone said, Hey

where’d you get that parasol you thieving

dumpster fire mailman.

We were surprised to find it was you

smiling like a butler fresh from some cliché.

While it is true you provided some kind of distraction

we could not help running for it

stripping off our static garments as we went

bumping into the world.

Dog Walk with Seventeen Cars

a friend calls to offer Spurs tickets

I decline

been waiting for this night of doing nothing

yesterday was a long road trip

preceded by days

and labors

Jackson Bailey tugs at the leash

little plastic San Antonio Water System flags line a driveway

some blue some green

as if for Lilliputian armies

in the distance an ice cream truck

plays Frosty the Snowman

followed by Love Is Blue

Jackson Bailey tugs at the leash

in an alley a baseball with a busted seam

is near a water meter

that three weeks ago was draped with a Mickey Mouse towel

it was there for two days

but when I went back to photograph it on the third

the opportunity had passed

Jackson Bailey tugs at the leash

the large cottonwood two streets over

or at least what’s left of it

offers that leaf rattle that always brings me peace

in an hour we are home

while we were gone

seventeen cars were stolen in Albuquerque, New Mexico


the round and shiny knob you grip

getting to that other room

reflecting all behind you in miniature

as in a hand-size mirror

as you open the door

the knob and image swing away

you step in

to a world hung with drapes of heavy conjecture

quaint and threatening doilies

are strategically placed on every surface

a claw torn blanket

a flash of red obscured by your hand

a frayed edge

didn’t your grandmother tend toward violence?

I don’t know said the wolf

horizon from east of east to west of west

in the black curve of his eye

lashes radial like a child’s drawing of the sun

Four Days after Christmas at the Golden Spur

a stranger says

it’s cold as fuck out there

and then, another

yeah, thought I’d better stop in for a warm up cold beer.

warm up the insides

and the stranger


John Wayne is cardboard thin

stapled to the paneling

the shadows of his legs like skis to nowhere

the stranger buys me a sacrificial bottle

next to the duke the prow of a bighorn sheep

emerges from the wall

a taxidermy specter

his right front hoof on pointe

the left a suspended counterpoise

he will dance his way round a low shelf

topping a plywood frieze burnt with cattle brands

border round an empty stage

rocking R, bar H

such is his frozen joy

or at least his furtive, golden glance

suggests this may be.

the stranger, now less so, supplies more sacrifice

glass clinks a momentary alignment

the front door of the bar swings open

spilling brazen white sky framing Santa

he is seated in a lamp laden jeep

at the gas station across the road

Christmas bulb definition, headlights, grill, the works

They won first prize!

a sudden blonde appears in the doorway

she wants a set up for four

the stranger glances her way as a third sacrifice

spills on the floor

Santa says, who needs Ethan Edwards?

the puddle gathers light

Writer, artist and musician Hills Snyder lives in Magdalena, New Mexico, where he runs an art gallery/house concert/performance venue, kind of a small array. His writing has been published in Glasstire, Art Matters, Artcore, …might be good, Dreamworks, the San Antonio Current and Southwest Contemporary. Residencies include the Ucross Foundation, Banff Centre for Arts, Fountainhead, and the Artpace International Artist-in-Residence Program. Photo credit: Ramin Samandari.

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