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Jim Culleny
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Lot’s Wife They say I looked back out of curiosity. But I could have had other reasons. I looked back mourning my silver bowl. Carelessly, while tying my sandal strap. So I wouldn't have to keep staring at the righteous... Continue reading
Posted 3 hours ago at 3quarksdaily
Equal opportunities A son and a daughter. The mother prefers the son to the daughter. The son will stand by his mother through the vicissitudes of life. The daughter will produce another son to stand by her side. An aphorism... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at 3quarksdaily
The Onion The onion, now that’s something else. Its innards don’t exist. Nothing but pure onionhood fills this devout onionist. Oniony on the inside, onionesque it appears. It follows its own daimonion without our human tears. Our skin is just... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at 3quarksdaily
Everyone was in Love . One day, when they were little, Maud and Fergus appeared in the doorway naked and mirthful, with a dozen long garter snakes draped over each of them like brand-new clothes. Snake trails dangled down their... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at 3quarksdaily
—from the sculpture by Rodin Within the Whirling Moment . Those lovers linked in bronze will not escape the wonder of their first embrace. Today's passion is blown of air not hewn in stone: a fragmenting spiral within the whirling... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at 3quarksdaily
Puerto Rican Obituary . They worked They were always on time They were never late They never spoke back when they were insulted They worked They never took days off that were not on the calendar They never went on... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at 3quarksdaily
The Chase They say the chase ends where the earth is put together by two halves, but no matter —because that is you at thirty, perhaps forty: corpus callosum of the brain, two loaves opening and closing like a book.... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at 3quarksdaily
Letter from My Ancestors . We wouldn’t write this, wouldn’t even think of it. We are working people without time on our hands. In the old country, we milk cows or deliver the mail or leave, scattering to South Africa,... Continue reading
Posted Jul 22, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
The Problem of Describing Color . If I said – remembering in summer, The cardinal’s sudden smudge of red In the bare gray winter woods – If I said, red ribbon on the cocked straw hat Of the girl with... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
“The Holy Land is everywhere” —Black Elk Holy Land moving to one side out of traffic, off the shoulder into the weeds, listening it occurres to me that nothing is tangential, life happens here regardless not unscathed by the mechanical... Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Summer Love Poem We are not lovers because of the love we make but the love we have We are not friends because of the laughs we spend but the tears we save I don't want to be near you... Continue reading
Posted Jul 16, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
When I heard the Learn’d Astronomer When I heard the learn’d astronomer, When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me, When I was shown the charts and diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them, When I sitting... Continue reading
Posted Jul 14, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Her Body is Private in spite of all the sweet inducements to disrobe in the public eye, to sunbathe in the hot glow of the spotlight (not be forgotten for a minute, maybe two); in spite of all the cash... Continue reading
Posted Jul 10, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
THEN AY KNOW THEN AY KNOW my horse, let alive and out of days, hide now paled, hind legs slow to drag, lower head to lift, hoof-split, burred and rough from the dirt. Strange when Ay speak to him. Tremble... Continue reading
Posted Jul 8, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
In the Leupold Scope With a 40X60mm spotting scope I traverse the Halabjah skyline, scanning rooftops two thousand meters out to find a woman in sparkling green, standing among antennas and satellite dishes, hanging laundry on an invisible line. She... Continue reading
Posted Jul 6, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
The Mercy The ship that took my mother to Ellis Island eighty-three years ago was named “The Mercy.” She remembers trying to eat a banana without first peeling it and seeing her first orange in the hands of a young... Continue reading
Posted Jul 3, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
A Ghazal from Ghalib مقدمِ سیلاب سے دل کیا نشاط آہنگ ہے خانۂ عاشق مگر سازِ صدائے آب تھا The waters rise past the rafters in my house. Their undulant music calms my rage tonight. I was homeless before: it... Continue reading
Posted Jul 2, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
A Color of the Sky Windy today and I feel less than brilliant, driving over the hills from work. There are the dark parts on the road when you pass through clumps of wood and the bright spots where you... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Deer Walk Upon Our Mountains . When they see me said the old woman they stop where they are and gaze into my eyes for as long as I am willing to stand there in the wind at the edge... Continue reading
Posted Jun 29, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Touch We made our own laws. I want to be a Hawk, A Dolphin, a Lion, we’d say In stores where team logos hung Like animal skins. By moonlight, We chased each other Around the big field Beneath branches sagging... Continue reading
Posted Jun 28, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Hearing Parker for the First Time The blue notes spiraling up from the transistor radio tuned to WNOE, New Orleans, lifted me out of bed in Seward County, Kansas, where the plains wind riffed telephone wires in tones less strange... Continue reading
Posted Jun 23, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Breaking Pitch My father raises his hand to signal "enough," but I'm still pitching, and the ball spins off my fingertips–a breaking pitch with so much stuff on it my imaginary batter is too baffled to swing, so much stuff... Continue reading
Posted Jun 22, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Extracted —For my mother, Paulina (1926–2000) When I go out to my garden all I desire is a world with the mute on, but there comes my neighbor, the haughty one, the one who distinguishes himself by pronouncing words wrong... Continue reading
Posted Jun 17, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Refugee Blues Say this city has ten million souls, Some are living in mansions, some are living in holes: Yet there's no place for us, my dear, yet there's no place for us. Once we had a country and we... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2016 at 3quarksdaily
Making Foots Many a foot was chopped off an African highgrass runner and made into a cotton picking plowing peg was burned away into two festering runaway sores was beaten around into a gentleman’s original club-foot design They went for... Continue reading
Posted Jun 14, 2016 at 3quarksdaily