excerpts from Across the Great Piano.

by Matt McBride


you choose
its not choice
its only
the music to stand here
caught at your sleeve

Althea said

the officer nodded

and the pair took
places in the line of dancers

living beginning to leave
its record of electric inches

there was no law
against the ivory
in his handkerchief

Althea’s breathing
was a series
of gently sloped plains

a flood-borne silt
over the rich frame of Wyoming

a big old fashioned bedroom

a lurking humor
about his mouth

Althea had a drawer
of porcelain hands

hanging clothes


the amateur society
between them

Althea returned
eyes repeating blankly

her features
were june
strayed into age

aloud she said

I rent
something familiar
east of looking

the reception room

her hand
cool and smooth

blue leather shadows

the way you’re looking at me

the film
playing in the circuit

intent on seeing in the presence

several moments of silence
and then not

Matt McBride has published poems in Another Chicago Magazine, Columbia Poetry Review, Cream City Review, FENCE, Forklift, the Pinch, PANK, and Smartish Pace amongst others. His latest chapbook, Cities Lit by the Light Caught in Photographs, was released in 2012 by H_NGM_N Books. 

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