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The Elephants

Nine Poems

Peter Richards


Finally we came to rest for a spell
beneath one of those pines where all
the colors had been suppressed and
no matter how plainly we did rejoice
in the lodging there and mainly just
to see save for a few we were all here
together and as happy as I am to pause
here and place a wreath upon that ease
I know that ease is as begging as the hairs
common to both gods and men are few
and as I vowed to say it plainly I say it
like this you could feel the pine keeping
its gold drum atmosphere all to itself
and that the sun sojourns and fumes
and mutters on about its nascent hurt

For Us

Of the sixteen footer persuasion
organ nothing can be more Christ tedious
than the times when our play at everyday
vile circumstance requires we begin to go
about at least starting a process that may
evolve one day finding Job and removing
him from his weakness which is to toil
for coin without end sometimes for as long
as three or four days in a row organ this
I heard growing up in the charnel cabbages
better you were born parentless in a tray
of huff cider and told by its odd keeper ok
you're the next food in the food experiment


To participate
in a room say your finger
as one example
say try and love hate
this one half of a whistle
say to a teardrop
but I also love those who
falsify gardens


You look dubious
said the cabinet of sadness
catching itself on
the glass this morning


Fall equinox has
no argument with same old
naked sleeping me


Lord to smoke in
darkness and not feel


Hey there
thresh home
stead pony
eating my
august leek
cot fuck


Lord I would love
someone like that
the interest being
you superior me


Been all day a towel for life gray fable bus
prone to life death keeps her inner mitten
sun the color of fourteen shadow colognes
sun the color the sea fed handedly everywhere
was her calm self given creation scars and this
great baboon led to a pool to say if I was still
young or not and washing a friend during one
of his tall friendship pool crusades


In the room where I
go to read Clarice Lispector
aloud today my
dog comes in and sits
pure attention odd wagging
of tail slow on the
far end of metronome
slow intense moat listening
like the Christ listening
to stories on table
turning when he was a kid


Your broken Cessna
we went to see today
after two days walking
in the woods had three
yellow force field ram
shadows and two plain
beautiful red number
shields yellowing and
one long pylon ski growing
more and more cloy
gladly mangled
not to hurry


Her white cable sweater saying this is for the enemies of moving people. His three stage curtain paintings on behalf of my real dad who just like my friend’s dad would often soften my food in his mouth first. Her mother's palm of an alley cat and the room where she wedded me beneath one of those pink black silica tarantulas, for all love is comely Omni magazine posters. His table drawing blue jeans because I yearn too much and lack talent. Her mouth poem out of fauna calling on the mean cloud houses.

A Sound of Head Torches Came to Me

A sound of head torches came to me
across the lawn great Hessian sea
master at the burning of a doe I call
you my floor gatherer and I say to you
hessian I may be of rueful true to life
demon cloth but it does not follow then
into your lord's head subject of prefect
meaning that I am and or also am I equally
wherefore art stupid no Hessian nor am I
dim witted to the Naiads nor one of weak
heart nor of two minds conjoined no my
dear floor gatherer here try and polish this

This originally appeared on July 16, 2017