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Jacob Kahn || 5 Sonnets


As if measuring time and measuring thought,

the night tells the night to breathe in.

Alas to emote triangles is to keep lancing

at the square. The sequence defers

its contingency upon me and a few other bloggers

by the rails. In a small city by a river, we

tour the edges of a mountain with a little glass hat.

We handle and pack away capsules

of cylindrical black air.

So the investigation in its throes,

in description, a circular impediment

hollowed out by an arcade of stoic resignation

and ornamental chimes. Not too much, buddy.

Too much stirring infers.




Pile the ups, scatter the downs.

The cumulative city has waved goodbye. In principal,

lavender culminates in the context of forever.

Forever implies the wake of this nostalgic throb.

Some galvanize Tripoli, some admire the ducks.

Still it hurts to be loved & understood.

In Tuesday, I sense disbanded truth,

cause, the hair on my neck

expanding like a spider inside a parade float.

My sixteen green legs circle the tree of proof.

A crusade of ancient brooks backs fragrantly off.

This part of my brain is bruised, it deletes

the sound of your voice coming from the closet.

Remove or deflect; two legs come together and cling.




Her shade is voluntary, with each pause

I leak ebullience in a brazen river.

Incumbent zones announce English conduct.

From ‘the brush of statement’ I got

‘understatement as underbrush,’ from tomorrow

gilded springs. From religion

I got time for a hot red beer.

Now show me a language other than landscape.

Because what’s ethereal in practice

should be practical in the field of ether.

Should night precipitate in rooting-out my pulpit.

Should tender shuttles remain theoretical.

What’s common to barrels is common

to spines. And if he wants, so he thumbs.




I have a few more questions beginning

in winter and ending in fall.

A black scarf rotates around the neck.

A green ball lands in my arms.

I’ve heard Heidegger thought best in other people’s houses.

I’ve heard potentially being was not

what the world had in mind.

Pivot and ricochet, pivot and glance.

I need tissues brothers and fingers

to avoid death. I need intend nothing

to stay alive. Here is my chance

to launder in the frame of taking place.

I’m going to take it with me

to Hawaii, to the movies, to my backyard grave.




The lit-up rift of phenomenology

cools off (in) the locomotive hedges.

Suspended similitudes

constitute religious episodes

in the vestigial haze of our diorama.

Squirrels rescue Appalachian towns,

they never let go. They rest on the ice.

I hold my nose close to one’s neck.

I have some sort of natural right to the camera

to accumulate visible tread.

Like a plangent riptide,

Idaho flings out all its seasons at once.

Like Idaho, I need one more line.

If you cut laughter in half, it shines.


Jacob Kahn was born and raised in Salt Lake City. Since 2008, he has lived Missoula, Montana, which is a good place to write and unwrite sonnets, a place that knots in the heat and blossoms in the cold. Other sonnets can be found forthcoming in 580 Split and other writing forthcoming in Dreginald.

Sally Rodgers || 5 Poems

[Incomplete Cast of Characters]


I—the speaker

you—innumerable yous

a Mother (deceased)

Mable—who’s the she

Stead—who’s the father

Hank—who’s the brother

Q who—who’s the uncle

Mia—who’s the aunt (deceased)




[And Mable when I say]


And Mable when I say

comes from money I mean

comes from more money than me.

The doves see through Henri and know

his chompers were a ganga of battered

birches, stunted birches

the earth searches its muscle memory

for the sameness of frankincense and then dances.


We flame drench whosoever slept the sea

is how we spoke alike,


spoke of light spruces. Now sluice down

the nooses because lurk is by a window of medicine

or the end of this line, nightingales


in decline amidst a thicket. Let’s sing the sameness

of Mable.


I mean unstable

ingrate equals intellect and this too is myopic, hogshit, I wish

the internet was a book that couldn’t get—

anyway, what cured my

rickets is the gull light in eucalyptus

and the movies last Christmas. I miss this


crust of snow, a jumble of slow

hiccups. Our mothers lied to us

about the sound of sand and what happens

to sweet tea after its marrying.


Now it was always too dark out for the dead people

in Q’s El Camino. They misunderstood

sainthood, racket of redwood,

be a scattergood through our house. It’s 4 a.m., and the

molecules of dawn have gone shameless.

Boundless bundles of crazy aimless.






[What this biopic needs]



What this biopic needs

is new knees, glass dad, and ache of marriage, trach of marriage, cold blood, the violins in—

Well you know about Mia’s cracked teacup

when spring screams torrents at me meaning Mable

waits to shoot up

the weather with my money, who is happy and few sharp teeth, who is nothing

the glow stops and don’t know

about chompers, spokes of somber swept-through-body

likes-to-yell-at-kids. Cement when the moss invents again

is where we flame drench the world of flesh

and lurk is by a window softer than haunted heaven where mentholyptus

remains resplendent. Forever I hate when my house shakes

because the other white matter

is what matters when it comes to most glaciers, not the snow in her throat. She’s under the table,

I mean Mable,

now see-what-laughter, the shins is my daughter or sameness

of timber. There’s something­­­­­­­ the matter with brother.





[This ain’t no pillow]


This ain’t no pillow



woe or sonorous desert


where I ate my insatiable

amidst a thicket

of stunted birches, battered birches,

every invisible word

for red birth, bog birth

the stunted earth. Your author begot naught

after Stead was layers of water, the nave built, everyone’s dad

is older than dirt. Naturally, I provoke men with questions again

in the days of defective echolocation, our cumbersome shuffle

which is all the work


your legs love. We are total flesh

see hailstone or Bechdel test.

Now our Mable who art in mountains,

shiver rifts thy sky


while I aid and abet impressive

pheasants, all the alpine adolescents

with crepuscular eucalyptus

in their endless, meaningless, grass tusks of bride sweet,

that broke fucking. Unfolding wasp

-swung, star


shrank the village to the bed we in

when rain begins.

Struggles a streetlight,

the wind against groaning.






[Meanwhile our heartbeats shook the dead]


Meanwhile our heartbeats shook the dead

of flame-drenched and older than

sameness, gardens upon gardens of night-dress.

Nevertheless, an hourglass and invisible death

left Mable’s throat a sugarcoat,

the moral lass

by hive then once cried when the

glow stopped, all the gravel-pile snow-sopped

mountains of memory, the middle class.

What we have here is a money problem,

our gold-spangled chompers at dawn

are gone, the migraine dark,

and the right word for woods is where when you need it?

Oh forest florists, forest floor it’s

only good for collecting water. I miss my mother

and that’s the matter with me and the hammer of featherhood,

fathered in soot. The dog dies although I sometimes walk her,

and Mable’s mouth remains marble-heavy and authored.



[Because You Were Drunk and the Dog was Crying]


Because you were drunk and the dog was crying,

it was naturally night getting overly astonished again

as the Noh falls so-so ago, although


blue petals splinter an ingrown bone, we rose them alone, rows them all home.


And that’s what’s the matter with me and our other mother and father


according to whom, feathered in soot,

suits bloodstone, see helio, and woe


to those who froze feathers,

bundled and left-my-breasts-relentless.


Or rustless.


Or restless.


Or rent-less, as if


my authentic thighs dement this sky

-writing until cauterized with cumbersome letters.


Below bellweather, my dear’s in the dirt, drizz boys reverse

chambers. Thou art aching in stranger, unshuckable

spokes of light. Much get sleep didn’t I last night.




Sally Rodgers is a sudden rush (out) from a besieged place upon the enemy; a sortie; esp. in the phrase to make a sally; Sally Rodgers is the first movement of a bell when ‘set’ for ringing; a ‘handstroke,’ as distinguished from the reverse movement of ‘backstroke;’ also, the position of a bell when it is rung up to; Sally Rodgers is a corruption of sal enixum; she is one of several eucalyptus or acacias, she resembles willows in habit or appearance; Sally is to leap, bound, dance; she is of a warlike force: to issue suddenly from a place of defense or retreat in order to make an attack; Sally Rodgers is to bring (a bell) to the position of ‘sally.’ Sally Rodgers is both a noun and a verb.