Background Poem
by Henry Goldkamp

  1. This is a background poem,
  2. worse than waiting music
  3. getting your brows waxed;
  4. silent powders gently chalk
  1. your face. Do not owe them—
  2. why would you abuse it
  3. by glancing at its tracked
  4. tendencies, its duck-footed walk?
  1. Better for it to be an ohm,
  2. just a passing floorboard crick,
  3. as memorable as an ax
  4. to his lumberjack, or caffeinated talk.
  1. Don’t take it to a park, caging
  2. lines in your boned dome.
  3. (You certainly don’t let sparrows
  4. trick you into taking them home.)
  1. Let it flutter on as bird-rhyme
  2. to land on their grey-dry old shits,
  3. on moss stewed and unfracked,
  4. no stone tossed or bread jawed.
  1. Leave this alone without feathers,
  2. for their stems never grown
  3. make the grass a dying place,
  4. a sunshiny grave outlined in chalk.
Packingtown Review – Vol.9, Fall 2017

Henry Goldkamp lives in Saint Louis & New Orleans with his wife and three dogs. Most important to him is realizing how damn lucky this is. His work is in Mudfish, Hoot, Straylight, and others; his public art has been covered by Time and NPR. For more about his work, google “henry goldkamp” with a fresh drink of your choice.

  1. Henry Goldkamp
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