V  P  R

Contemporary Poetry and Poetics





There goes someone else's
breakthrough, winging
a little low, a bit wobbly,
but with heart-warming determination,
like the soul of The Little Engine That Could,
only with pinions.

The iridescence of its belly
suggests that it might be
some type of spiritual breakthrough,
but the turrets & butresses indicate
that it could be of the artistic variety.
Its complex structure marks it
as significant among its kind,
but it's awfully small—
maybe it's the breakthrough
before the breakthrough,
what might be classified
as an Advanced Preliminary.

Of course, I whistled, cooed, and hummed
in its direction, attempting to lure it
with little silver mirrors
& puddles of honey in thin china bowls,
but I should have realized
that the sweet & the bright
could never tempt it;
I should have understood
that it's drawn toward landscapes
bleaker & more brittle
than any I might dare to extend.


© by Claire Bateman


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