Poem of the Week: September 28th, 2015

Weston Cutter is from Minnesota and is the author of Enough, All Black Everything, and You’d Be a Stranger, Too. His poem, “New Fit,” appears in Volume 4, Issue 1 of burntdistrict.

By Weston Cutter

Even weeds know better than
to let go. Some dull bird

sits in the branches of the dead
red oak, dumb roots

still cupping dirt as it sits like
a cherry

on top of the stack
of dismantled branches we add to

after storms. Even the bird knows
better than

to trill. Even singing knows to
break to make

way for facts.


Poem of the Week: September 15th, 2015

Jessie Janeshek’s first book of poems is Invisible Mink (Iris Press, 2010). She co-edited the literary anthology Outscapes: Writings on Fences and Frontiers (KWG Press, 2008). Crime Scene 9, our poem of the week, can be found in Volume 2, Issue 2 of burntdistrict along with more of her work.

By Jessie Janeshek

                      If Eddie did it
it was a pepperbox
phone hanging limp on wire

a cop-yellow coatrack
                      electric cigar and a piano

                      a ghost-secretary
          lard-hard tessellate

                      an escritoire decked
          in memorial violets

Poem of the Week: September 7th, 2015

Lillian Kwok’s work appears or is forthcoming in Hawaii Pacific Review, Salt Hill, NANO Fiction and other journals. She holds an MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. More of her work can be found in Volume 3, Issue 2 of burntdistrict.

By Lillian Kwok

You are not a river, it disappoints me. You are incapable of drowning me, flooding your shores, turning my skin blue. I can’t drink you from my two hands. For a while though, we were happy, swimming in the water, your hands in my hair, my legs around your waist. But now I’m on the rocks watching you swim, and I don’t care if you stay there underwater, if you never come up again.

Poem of the Week: September 1st, 2015

Emma Lister is a winner of Foyle Young Poets 2013 and the National Trust’s first under-sixteens poetry competition in 2011. More of her work is forthcoming in The Blue Pencil Online. “Home is in the Wind” was originally published in Volume 3, Issue 1 of burntdistrict.

By Emma Lister

I ask myself only this each greying morning:
are you pure yet? Usually the answer is:
it’s a no from me. But like they all say, before I get there
there’s no way I’m leaving.

Yet I’m not like those talent-show never-gos –
I don’t cry, just clench my jaw
and concentrate to disappear beneath
the fine coffee-mug ring of instant, true-fold grit
that circles daily further round this life.

That means nothing much but I’m going to try again.
I smoke and smoke and wash my hair in ash.

[Give me the valley of an actress’s beach hipbones,
the love of my grudging mother,
a white ward light I can vanish underneath.]

But the nights get more boring the less I sleep.
Under the moon it resolves itself to me:
I want to be feather-light. I’ve got
a lot of hope for this.
Need to be crescent slight.