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Jamie O'Connell

Poppy seed

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I wish you were back with your paper crown,
watching eyes
so kind and full of witches.

the leaves fluttered
and fell in batches
and twice every hour
      your garden withered.

that February morning
you were blurred
bawling into love,
      resting resting gone.

      your vegetable brain and body
      shrunken into drawers.

is there a storm ahead

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when the leaves fall   they breathe in a mound
 there are broken veins and smoke

when there is a lady        her body made of petals
they grow from her head
when her tears dry to   make the sun cold      

      when she watches her boy swinging      and smiling
           at the rain

  with the ducks dead she watches          chicks float
by dandelions       in their pink-water pond

a man sleeps trapped in leaves
his eye blinks           when a lady feeds pigeons

they turn into ducks     who fly on zigzag kite strings
and the sun       did not shiver

composted clouds

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there are mirages
of mattresses
on the windshield

they spread as paper plates                   and then dissolve

if there are ghosts
then they are ghosts

who breathe from plants                     to make atmosphere
and plot dreams                         out of dark matter

as we dodge the drops
and the melting of pavement

they pull rain puddles                     from crescent moons
where minds twist ribbons                     through stellar oxygen

they make people
sleep through space
as empty jets               in lonely birds do

Barry Goodman

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I ask you where to find the balloons,
you answer nowhere.


will you follow the giant squid tattoo,
a mirage, across from lightning clouds?

the leaves turn brown
and all the while
we apologize to no one for sneezing.

babies are being
pulled by red wagons,

balloons spiral around
their crowns.

daisies grow old,
sunflowers follow,
sinking into ground.


as a plane pierces
through the sky you smile,
our babies playing
with your chain.

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