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Hamblin - Heyen - Hirschfield - Hlavsa - Huang - Hubbell - Huguley

The Way to Watch a Football Game
by Robert Hamblin

Not from a reserved seat
in the brightly lit stadium,
wrapped in the blanket
of the anonymous crowd,
with the players
lined and numbered in place
like pieces on a chess board
or monotonous, repetitive figures
in a video game.

But, say, from the alley
that runs behind the stadium,
standing in the dark,
peering through the fence
and thickly planted trees
intended to obscure the view
of those who refuse to pay
the price of conformity.

Watch the quarterback
lodge the ball in the branches
of a maple tree.
Watch the runner turn end
to disappear in a rush
of moving leaves.
Look for him to reappear
beyond the next tree.
He may or may not.
Watch the defenders
play hide-and-seek
among the high hedges.
Read the tackle from the roar
of the largely invisible crowd.
Watch the receiver
leaping for the rising moon.

You won't need
to see the scoreboard.
You already know
who's won.

From Keeping Score: Sports Poems for Every Season by Albert Robert Hamblin. Copyright © 2007 by Time Being Books. Reprinted courtesy of Time Being Press.

Lost Brother
by Virginia V. James Hlavsa

Before unbound, we faced each other, wound,
cowled in child-nighthood of play mate.
Now, from without, the slow white knobs of hate
slide, lump, collide and slide again,
       dumb and sinister,
under some dreamed-up water weight.

But then, within, there was foul play —
was kick and pinch and scratch and sock
and back-pinned arm and hair-yank shock
and brittle thumb on bone-dry gum.
       Total war. Single combat.
Keen-eyed Batman, I had you in holy deadlock,

until you, one warm noon, pushing ahead,
step on my neck, awake.
Underwater, I, bursting, upbreak,
feel your buoyed surge, your silvered flick;
       thickly I, rising too,
breathing at last, gasp after your lost wake.

From Waking October Leaves: Reanimations by a Small-Town Girl by Virginia V. James Hlavsa. Copyright © 1993 by Time Being Books. Reprinted courtesy of Time Being Press.

The Liberation Films
by William Heyen

Seeing the films:
now we begin to know.

A bulldozer working the piles of dead together,
its treads hacking horizontal ladders

into this remorseless German dirt
that translates flesh into Erika and flowers:

now we begin to know.
Now we begin to know.

Seeing the dozer's curved blade curl
the dead like a flesh wave

as high as our heads
toward great necessary pits;

seeing the bodies white
with necessary lime;

seeing the bodies fall
over the graves’ edges;

seeing the eyes staring at nothing,
the bodies falling in slow motion;

seeing the stick limbs falling in slow motion:
now we begin to know.

Seeing the dead roll and fall
as though flailing their last air,

without words, without sound,
without one syllable of their last prayers:

now we begin to know You, Lord,
now we begin to know.

From Erika: Poems of the Holocaust by William Heyen. Copyright © 1991 by Time Being Books. Reprinted courtesy of Time Being Press.

Mothers and Children Only
by Ted Hirschfield

She smelled of apples,
And the sun was entangled,
The sun was lost in her hair,
And that's all I remember . . . .
And I bet she thinks of me
As her first child: after
She had her first child —
Proud Prussian girls
Who never panicked,
Balanced at rest
On one hip, one leg
Outward, patiently watching
The ship leave in silence:
A horror film in slow
Motion on a silent screen.
And they are not screaming
In the broken, stuttering film
As the Russians rape them,
En masse, in rotation,
And empty 800-year-old
Barns of their treasure —
My mother gave the gift
Of life again and handed
Me secretly over to her,
Whose life, for one moment,
Was interchangeable with mine.
And I still feel her now,
Hugging me to herself,
Walking quickly up the ship,
Away with me to freedom.

From German Requiem: Poems of the War and the Atonement of a Third-Reich Child by Ted Hirschfield. Copyright © 1993 by Time Being Books. Reprinted courtesy of Time Being Press.

by Ann Yu Huang

pear for the taste. The darker
the sweeter. The front porch misses us.

Green is appeasing, the rat we let go without
thinking. My skirt isn't a mess

without the intent of regaining. When I hold onto the thigh
I mix up the mind. Dinning table illuminates

our sun. You sweep our floor with logic.
You bury me in your heart beguilingly.

Beyond the hastened clock,
naïveté becomes my poetry.

Lighthouse in Nantucket. My body responds to the
whale watching season.

These poems belong to a collection entitled Delicious and Alien Stars.  Copyright © 2014 Ann Yu Huang.

Uva Agate
by Ann Yu Huang

Some magenta glaciers that ignite the meteor.
Some scented paper to find an unfound address.
Some smooth transitioning of a hushed civilization.
Some mending of a little black dress
through green dew descending, or the fall
of a sun that expands golden in the fields.
Rotunda shaded meadows bellow deep
mingling the stock or our life.
Some mischievous happenstances from our passage of time.

These poems belong to a collection entitled Delicious and Alien Stars.  Copyright © 2014 Ann Yu Huang.

Horses in the Rain
by Patricia Hubbell

North of Narragansett, where the sea gnaws at the fields, I saw three gray horses, grazing in the rain.
As sea runs through sand, fingers of water, touching new places, stroked their flanks.
Out on the bay, three sailboats wheeled and ran for home.
A flock of gulls beat down the wind.
Anchored to their field, the horses rode out the squall -- Rain slicked the black manes ropy, turned the tails to wind-frayed hawsers.
Shut in my car, I watched one dappled mare fling her head high.
I named them:
"Sea Grass," "Beach Plum," "The Wild-Eyed Rose."

"Horses in the Rain" is reprinted from A GRASS GREEN GALLOP, by Patricia Hubbell, published by Atheneum, 1990. Copyright 1990 by Patricia Hubbell

by Mark Huguley

"Be not far from me
For trouble is near,
And there is no help." Psalm 22:11

Panic is spreading..
Where, exactly, are you heading?

These are troublous times in the twenty-first century
Have you ever before witnessed so much misery?

Do you have a terror-proof plan?
If you do, then I will follow you.

My accountant just fleeced me;
I can no longer pay the mortgage and utilities.

I want to throw up my hands and scream;
Life has become something rather mean.

The beat police demand confessions;
Last night a thief stole all my possessions.

My car broke down and I started walking;
My best friend and I are no longer talking.

God knows I'm a panicked man;
Feeling like a woman, and like a man.

Mother said, "there's a lid for every pot."
Mother had no idea of the trouble I've got.

In the pages of my yearbook
Are photographs of homecoming queens,
And all the jocks, they were those girls' kings.

Why do I look so long at things like these?
I can no longer tell cabbages from kings.

Come now love, give me your hand;
Let's fly higher to a place we should forever be-
Slow dance cheek-to-cheek,
With angel dust stirring
Under the soles of our delicate feet.

Copyright © 2009 Mark Huguley


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