John Isles


The glass doors open and what was free
for eyes isn’t free anymore…

Part common daisy, part mountain,
Shasta daisies in hybrid wizardry awaken in sunlight—
like advertisements for themselves displayed
before a panoramic landscape of painterly hills
and a gold-strewn stream no one will ever pan.

                     And here I am, a grafting myself—
balled into a bruise outside the hospital, overlooking
the humantide ebbing into the sunset

                                                 in a picture show
I’ve seen too many times, the dialogue
on my lips entirely wrong for the occasion—

-a woman on a cell, her voice lingering—briefly
-a stooped man waving, the traffic not stopping
-a heat so sharp it reaches my unsunned parts

Junipero Serra, his life congealed into stone,
looks down…         He points westerly and away
from the serial facts of this life, toward the vast

uncompartmentalized vistas of the Pacific.

© 2005 Electronic Poetry Review