One Poem by Kyle Schlesinger

​Andy Giannakakis

Andy Giannakakis. Untitled, 2012, oil on panel. Courtesy of the artist.

Far & Away

rifling glove as you well know
one and the same this was the late
never defect back to the wall

at the far end a gloomy bay 
books in the black it all began on 
whose thousand yard stares

until that day when the last 
variegated cloud lifts off the roof 
and it was here on the radio

in what was always a beverage 
back to the wall while waiting tables 
never been any waiting since


names drop nobody hears
mortar and brick when the light is like
when the last question repeats itself

your story here never the same 
ballpoint looks good in pictures
daydream on mute no limit

turnstiles into wishes why bother
be curious torches fire in movies 
that’s how it goes on a bicycle

with radio on the same old song
and you disappear your story here
from the book and suddenly


unconditional you something like allegory 
sun’s rays into old gold jigsaw 
slabs of black slate be curious

chinks of light just beyond crest 
top of drive country blacktop
by tall pines whose branches

were bowed under their burdens 
of snow and ice no need to know 
forget about being on the mouth

a dog’s a dog but lacking finesse
hang the cost on a clear conscience
slots to pay off some political doubts


anyway it seems whole world smiles
before chop landed story never ran
catch ghost before dying

no need to know iced vodka
without turning in a Wendy’s
when that happens phone doodles

I want you glasses take off
look at that watch who needs it
twilight snowman spun out

never said life follows
dubious glance as if
a word with you sure


dirty money sip coffee 
continue reading upside down
lower lip frowned as if

think of ears twilight snowman
medium hard return with drinks
show me a sign no longer new

as you were back on the line
pleasure from pleasure by the time 
on the shore of an artificial lake

cul-de-sac ends you were saying
depending on traffic blue-green
order by phone during bouts


return with drinks place an event
coasting down slopes your dreams
d’you have in mind a vermouth

it’s nine thirty-three headlights off
an artificial lake gets the collar
where riot girls go to retire

commercial laundry only a nod
glossy toes snow globe 
right foot on curb

shake off cold nobody answer
but why come here see the subject
who was color matter of fact


know how it is where riot girls go
sunshine don’t owe a dime
then maybe into snowy night

eye moves behind tinted glass
blue with money shake off cold
do me a favor weren’t there

somewhere west of Cheyenne 
the snow failed to cease
divided by a nose yeah the horse

in the big chair they neigh
clasp hands recall everything
when a commercial came on


this haircut’s killing not bad
recall everything of course
wasn’t there for what were after

elbows on knees loaded question
watching the snow fall upon night
they neigh fingers into glass

hang on phone seen and heard 
didn’t see rose the horse
forehead below a shock of yellow

a point slid to a halt
like I was saying in a wingback
a shuttle blows up


try for twin beds remove glass ceiling
recall what’s been said hang on phone
adore the real voice bar lights aim

blue neon vacancy warning flares 
whose names needn’t be mentioned
in other words like I was saying

threat was grave cinematic amnesia 
plot of land headlights at wreck
nothing personal fact is

do the numbers thickets for eyebrows
summered number think tanks
ship through the door talking blizzard


with two b’s and two t’s enjoy it
butts go stale outer ends of 
cinematic amnesia dark resign

or is it spit and image got urge 
women’s shoes other than magazines
little of interest summered number

think tanks almost next door 
diddles don’t know coming to boil 
on electric stove a vending machine

on-again off-again bay gelding
double-park cancel your dream
talking to the floor all night

Kyle Schlesinger is a poet who writes and lectures on typography and artists’ books. He is the author of Parts of Speech (Chax Press, 2014), The Pink (Kenning Editions, 2008), Hello Helicopter (BlazeVOX, 2007), and co-editor of Mimeo Mimeo.

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