Philip Byron Oakes

Glib Mime

A raconteur of stillness charming essence
from revelation, a distillery of oft echoed
rejoinders to the quiet tamping murmurs.
Given take of stipends from a hush falling
over all possibility of escape.
Before the calm subsumes the wrinkling
in the fabric.
A fruit of what anyone can see, to have
miser’s equity in the fight song of the
tedium, droning artificial flavors for the
pie that must be eaten with others.
Those best left to speak of what the
silence has said to them.

Iago TX

The happy death of day’s first blink at what
night has wrought, from shadows holding the
forgotten dear. Putting the pulse to rest
where the music dies in the arms
of its lover. The intransigent giving a little to
what can’t be quantified. A milquetoast
foundation to trust in the ground to hold. The
fastidious pool of acquiescence keeping
calm seas a priority, in the further interest
of giants still dozing off key in the wilderness
of hurt feelings. The sweet episodic
refrains of revery taking a nap hostage
for a song.


An insulated chatter playing into the narrative
of tall talk taking the neighbor’s silence by storm.
A benefactor in an equation adding up to problems
uncounted on for what they’re worth in numbers
coming true. Teflon talk of things to be considered
dangerous, if it weren’t for the reticence surrounding.
The parting shots cloistered in the infinite gasps of
the speechless, at the sight that makes its home in
the fringes of the woolly at the electric onset of dusk.

This Little Place

Loosely recommended worn to a disclaimer
brushing dandruff off the shoulders of Apollo.
Said to be a good place to eat words needing
salt, to broaden their impact in opening
envelopes, to reveal what they're saying in
Peoria. How the vagaries are playing sure
footing in the theatres buried in popcorn. The
camels are getting over the hump just fine, as
the football lights burn bright in collusion with
the virility of the darkness in the parking lot.
Not to be confused with the gray areas where
the quiet people live as if the world
revolved forever.

Color Me

Caramel tinctured trickle of sound spread thin
on wry bread, to feed the need to hear the
retorts of flavored air to breathe. Samples au
to the fingertip making its point, in
the election of a hand in triage, of the wounded
listening for the music in the roar. Twisted
expectations of love pretzels filling a void.
Diplomacy’s henchmen in the façade dispensed
casually to the subliminal horde. The lullaby
and bye of tall shadows leaning till they
fall into the melody of evening at a
precarious cost to the song.


The broken leg of a journey knitted to
places good only for their footholds, in making
the jump a frequent way of flying past the facts
of all but life. The somber tones to parceled
lands twisted into earthy rainbows, letting
the colors scheme as to what might befall
the motley in the crowd. The chances left
a wheel to roll the roundabout the time
it takes the invisible to make its
arrival felt by all.

Philip Byron Oakes is a poet living in Austin, Texas. His work has appeared in numerous journals, including Cricket Online Review, Otoliths, Moria, E•ratio and Blue & Yellow Dog. He is the author of two volumes of poetry, Cactus Land (77 Rogue Letters) 2009 and Sard (Otoliths) 2010.
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