Two Poems

Early Morning in the Side-Yard

On the garden’s wall

thighs and fingers pressed together

pressed white—  cold with dew

bits of mulch stick to our feet.


My mind goes back— around itself

Speech sits in my throat

force it to dormancy

turn out your eye


The old stars make way

A bird sings alone, in fits

The night turns blue.


She sees and she hears

lets it run over her

lustrous as a leaf in rain.


A worm falls out of the ground

pushes through the mulch

blindly feeling for softness.


The sky gives up its pattern,

grows the dew thicker.


Do not blink do not speak

She knows the light of day,

so undeniable and airy in the early.


Look above the fence

Look into or through the trees

It has introduced the choir.

That bird does not sing alone.


Could you speak? Could you,

when the face of Earth is set

in fresh, cold blue, even mutter?


The worm has found soft earth.

The birds only grow louder

It is over, night is over.


So she leads me

into the moist lawn.

We fall into broken dance

                                                    Lift her

her legs wrap around me

we fall beside the rose bush

into the mulchbed


Sitting in Bed, All Night, Just Home

Against the steady drone of AC,

a sharp heave— and my cough mixes

with the sterile vent current.


To go back to that red hammock

would be a dream, a dream

wrapped in thick Spanish talk

in more thick air, all informed

by a wandering ocean sigh.


Such a dream, but there’s the gong

of the dumpster. There’s the cicada cry

and the whine of floor beams

leaning together underfoot.

There’s my blinds all orange,

as they will be all night,

from the parking lot lights—

one of which is curtained by ivy

overgrown and filled with birds

who converse freely,

hours, still, before dawn.


My throat cottons.

As there is no cold dripping

can of beer sitting

on a stool just within swaying reach,

it stays that way.


Clouds in my forehead,

push my eyelids down, collapse

my midsection. May I, at last, slump

into my sheets? Settle, settle

my skin whispers through cotton.



Matt Conover currently studies creative writing as an undergraduate  at the University of Virginia. His poems have appearred in Glass, Garden and The Last Romantics. He wrote this post, and thinks it’s fair to post his poems on the site he works for so that his readers can get a sense of where he’s coming from. He welcomes all criticism.

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