Makings Of An Amateur Meteor

Keith Nathan Brown

                                                  Beyond the yellow and orange

[With the bottle raised high]  To the very
few, the few I have known.  Truly known, to
the few
                      He was bent over vomiting blood The pain
[Wobbly, feet re-steadying]  That have fallen      dug
between the cracks               deep against his abdominal
                                                     wall like a rusted
[Eyes closed, contemplative]  In one          coil which
locked vault of my memory are faces..           cut him
young faces lost.. in blue light.. yet an           howling
emerald bottle of their eyes.. weeping..              past
                                                      streetlamps Pain
[Wobbling, looking around]  The pale eyes         that
that                                           drowned every block
                                             in a shattered confusion
[Angry, hand in a tight fist]  Try to pull me          of
under                                                         yellow
                    A fifth of bourbon in his coat pocket and the
[Voice hoarse, breaking]  But.. we.. have so         air
much to say                                                swirled
                                      around him At peace together
[Sniffling, wiping a tear]  Because     until the break of
                                      eastern light when broken and
[Stumbling, now steady]  Because  face down on a pier
                                    hiccupped a thud, when the bag
[Wiping nose on sleeve]  So much      cracked wet and
to say                            pain crawled out thick as a slug
   When the body wafer-thin drifted up from pier disappearing
[Slipped, catching bottle]  Because   as a black filament
                                                        in the vaccuum
[Cradling bottle in arms]  To say, because     of dawn
each day in between these cracks has grown so     ...

flicker of
and the
stood the
suede of
the suede
of a curtain
inside of an
theatre the
stage then
swam with
rings of
of rings
into the
wires of
the plastic
color filters
melting in a
of himself
not living for
very long

burst in a shower of firefly sparks ashing red and gray over paper
mache rocks of campfire where he stamping stomped on red cello-
phane in between curses the cries of an audience down below who
glancing up at a catwalk expected embers falling around them but
in their ears a high-pitched whistling and against their faces felt
as the sky was overcome by a brightening sense of unease.

Keith Nathan Brown lives in Brattleboro, VT. His essay, "Network Subrealism," recently appeared in Puerto Del Sol. His poems have appeared in Word For / Word and are forthcoming in elimae.