Issue 21






Linda Russo





         maybe the birds are a clunky metaphor

                                                             because the desire is

         so ridiculous




                       what about tomorrow


                                 doted upon





                                             in a subtle display of persistence



             seamless company          of birds and bees



                           separated           by invisible boundaries





                                                              (And Birds take Places)




                                       unaware of the internal maps


                          we carry              and stretch          and thicken





                  thrilling and daring       as uncertain

                            as a potential or future










                                       my wings         a feature



                              my organism           an homage




                                    to wind in trees



                                    that make it habitable




                            we’re fucked when the soft syllables fade



                    don’t soften and call it greenspace

               I wasn’t going to



                                                              (Bliss is That)




               I’m not forest folk but when I get in the woods

               I’m not like an old-fashioned little flower any more




                              I’m not a farmer but when I step in a field

                                       the ceaseless rhythms settle me




                            breathy sips and wit chips



           it’s not usually so still




                                 the daily grasps of birds’ feet

                                                   are an estate we inherit

                                       flashing from tree to tree




                                                              it’s a skill they teach



                    in furious pulsing greens




                          not to fuck with your nests too much




                 it’s too still in this spot






                          the solid           traffic                    backdrop


                     bells sound         from a far tower



         (Breath is This)




           a single skilled chickadee           cracks the facade




                       I’m half in the park          half in my         yard


                   all asunbeam


                            all waiting for the moon










Linda Russo is the author of two books of poetry, most recently Meaning to Go to the Origin in Some Way (Shearsman Books, 2015); The Enhanced Immediacy of the Everyday (Chax Press) and a collection of lyric essays, To Think of her Writing Awash in Light, selected by John D’Agata as the winner of Subito Press inaugural creative nonfiction prize, are forthcoming.  She lives in the Columbia River Watershed, tends garden plots, and teaches at Washington State University.  She is online at inhabitorypoetics.blogspot.com



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