Poems

james_3am-copy

(Illustration by Sophie Laplante – click to expand)

 

3AM in the Modern Sleep

 

A careful child walks across my pillow.

I lie awake, humbled by the loyalty of my cactus

in a red tin by the window.

 

Leah lies in a deep daze

out on red wine

mid-sentence, telling me

I treat my wolves like sleigh dogs.

 

Snow falls from her brow,

collects in the basins of her eyes.

The child stoops from her cheek to blow

it away.

 

I hold the salt of our situation to my tongue,

the pepper to my nose:

How we trade hurt.

 

I hold the little boy up in my palm,

to my chin as he squirms.

And I can’t for my life think

what we’ll do with him when the morning comes.

___

 

 

(illustration by Sahra Campbell – click to expand)

 

People Used To Forget

 

People used to forget.

You’d hear the story from Benny,

just back from New Battleford, Saskatchewan.

 

He went to town, now he has a new horse.

The facts weren’t really the point.

 

He’d be at the four corners by the fuel pump,

next to the horse

and a yellow, moiled plain,

mostly just under sky,

and tell a different story every time.

 

First just Aaron Mumby stopped forgetting.

You’d see him standing nearby with a pencil and paper

when no-matter-who said no-matter-what.

 

Before long they had to build a library.

They also built a statue of Aaron Mumby.

 

Now even Dickie, the idiot remembers.

The internet has all his thoughts saved

so we can remember them too.