Philip Byron Oakes

Marking the Calendar
Anniversaries of old news, masquerading as news of old reborn; as never having gone away the way of all birthdays, fattening up a calendar to straighten out a circle that never stops. You couldn’t have painted it any prettier in pink, mauve on crutches, limping through a kaleidoscope of experience; a horn on which to blow warnings as to the capacity of the desert to roil. The millennial yawn, taken for a roar from a distance of epic inches, accounting for the vertiginous trek to the anxious succumbing. A richly constituted prayer of insufferable hubris slinking past the teeth of a certified simpleton, taking wing in the ambience, prospering at a narcissistic distance on the shelf where state secrets go to die. A chronologically challenged chain of events getting entangled in the testimony of a secret agent, ever so incrementally polluting the stream behind his house. An achingly familiar figure in an easy chair pointing at the one who got away.

Counting Around
Quintillion times askance to oblique the angle taken, as a way to prove zero to itself. Round in the cheeks and heavy in the hips. A goose egg in a hunt for something taller.

An exponential childhood freckled with feigned regret, as a way to salvage fingers and toes from the fire. Glommed in pose and frozen in chase. A vapor sustaining a craving for water.

Meet You at Two
Dark fantasy filibusters snarling traffic, in laggard’s fast lane to a good night’s sleep; Lawrence Welk’s saxophone spicing silence with a drive thru yawn. Apprentice harlequins caressing gently used satin, where stuttered blasphemies unite into a practiced purr. Lacunae hide away beds. We’re all just standing there, see. The stop signs equivocating for candy. An inaudible sigh in a Panama hat, the answerable quote, homesteading the tongue in summation of sticky heels dragged down the stairs with the flavor of oompah; each word hosting the mischief of sunrise on the verandah of a drawl, giving a view of downtown its chance to breathe. A character in a play on words. A window that is a wall, a look backwards, a keyhole, a whisper, binding subliminal forces to a credo of blinking nods in the maelstrom. Svelte angst easily captured, glomming whittleproof to toxic conundrums, coagulating equations, buoyant and to the breeze. A puff of smoke walking the straight line, with a limp meant to subscribe to a story.

Philip Byron Oakes' work has previously appeared (and is presently viewable on the internet) in Sawbuck(1.6), Horse Less Review(5), Otoliths(6, 8 and 9) , GlitterPony(3), Hamilton Stone Review(12), Euphemism(3.1), and he presently has work scheduled for publication in Cricket Online Review, Snow Monkey and My Name is Mud.

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