Two Poems

by Michael H. Brownstein

Curbs

my day begins with a prayer
and a night’s armor
gray breath and gray gasps for air
a leak in the area west of the gut
a somber throat
the last peals of swollen hamstrings
and a litter storm of sun and cloud
a glitter of phase and place
the gutter of phrase and frame

Ego

I do not feel like spoiled meat
rancid heart
a register of dismay

An anger or an auger
an anchor
metal rusting inside tissue

Echoes of ethos and ghosts
the ego of night
the boasting day

Seawalls breaking within tide
long streams of sand
a disconnect between rock and bone

Yet a mountain can roar
prairie grass flowers
hornets do not always sting


 

Michael H. Brownstein’s work has appeared in The Café Review, American Letters and Commentary, Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, The Pacific Review, Poetrysuperhighway.com and others. In addition, he has nine poetry chapbooks including A Period of Trees (Snark Press, 2004), Firestorm: A Rendering of Torah (Camel Saloon Press, 2012), and The Possibility of Sky and Hell: From My Suicide Book (White Knuckle Press, 2013). He is the editor of First Poems from Viet Nam (2011).
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