Tuesday, December 26, 2023

Tuesday poem #560 : J-T Kelly : Objectivity










J-T Kelly is an innkeeper in Indianapolis. He lives in a brick house with his wife, their six children, his two parents, and his brother.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

Tuesday poem #559 : Nicholas Molbert : Self Portrait as Saying




The apple doesn’t fall
far from the tree

doesn’t it?—
as my father loves

to say
about everything

except me
and him, really.

Split him in two
and get blood

-splotched skin
and tubes

of blood thinners.
Get a son

and the remedy.
Get deer hide hung

on tanning hooks
and skin in the game

of raising a boy
who knows how hunting

can signify a man.
Willingness to stay

in a tree stand
for hours, sharing

hours’-worth of silence
and body heat.

Pitch a rifle bullet
makes passing

through air
as opposed to flesh.

Knowledge that the time
between the sound

of a fired bullet
and the thump

of a carcass on brush
is a unit of distance.





Born and raised on Louisiana’s Gulf Coast, Nicholas Molbert lives in Los Angeles. He is the author of the chapbooks Goodness Gracious and Cocodrie Elegy, both from Foundlings Press.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan


Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Tuesday poem #558 : Ron Silliman : THIRD FROM THE SUN



The hang glider sails out

over the concert goers

over the border

bringing death


Portrait of a family

three smoldering husks

in a burned-out car

their heads thrown back mouths open in

a perpetual scream


No Munch, no Goya

No Icarus falling

into Breughel’s sea

Not even Pinochet’s 

airforce dropping prisoners

high over the 

Pacific Skin pealing

from the backs of

Hiroshima’s dead


I can shut my eyes

but I cannot unsee

the horrors before me

before you before us


I had thought this was behind us

but I was wrong Men I have met

ordered the death of Lumumba

calmly as you order tea

the spectacle of the bullet

in Bin Laden’s brain


lacking only popcorn

in that theater at

the White House


So now a Secret

Service agent concedes

he found the second bullet

there was a second bullet

Oswald could never

have acted alone


Kennedy stares

up from the gurney

into a future

he'll never see we’ll

never see our 

children’s children

will suffer unspeakably


The diplomat leaving the

consulate carrying

Khashoggi in a suitcase

parts is parts permits

a negotiation nobody much wants

five years hence, a deal

somebody else hopes to stop

hence the graceful silent

mechanical birds in the cloudless

air you cannot breathe

if you are burning alive

your flesh curdling crisping

the smell of your eyebrows

your hair your hands 


Permit me to kiss you

on your burned-out lips

I can’t even tell your gender

it burns away as with dreams

loves, memories, unfinished

business that would still

make you anxious if only

you could remember

what it was to live on this planet






Ron Silliman [image credit: Didi Menendez] recently moved to Springfield, Pennsylvania after 28 years on the Main Line. He teaches at Penn. With Alison Fraser, Benjamin Friedlander and Jeffrey Jullich, he co-edited David Melnick's Nice: Collected Poems, just published by Nightboat Books.

the Tuesday poem is curated by rob mclennan