Philip Byron Oakes

.................................What We Learned Today

Of the halibut of the joke, on the water. 2nd cousin to a cosmetic
reverence for smoke, for fear of real fire licking the probative, with the
terminal warmth ascribed to solar bodies in the matinee.

Of the bile of the lumberjacks, percolating in the enchanted forest.

Of panic, pickled as souvenirs, to withstand the amnesia of the joyful.

Of the plethora of empty spaces, lending condolences to the crowded.

Of the riot of colors, blessing the slow revolutions of the moon in folklore.
A collective sparkling of evenings settling as a beneficent virus, in
memory of what’s been squandered on truth.

Of an ode to dedicated alabaster, as a sealant over residue of atrocities,
stained with age gilded in spin, spun to homily, in lieu.

Philip Byron Oakes is a poet living in Austin, Texas. His work has appeared in numerous journals, including Otoliths, Switchback, Cricket Online Review, Sawbuck, Crossing Rivers Into Twilight, E ratio, Moria and others. He is the author of Cactus Land (77 Rogue Letters), a volume of poetry. (ss)