Philip Byron Oakes

Moon Shaped

True to the mark the scar left. A
bubble in the belief fragging pogues
for fear of paper cuts and paste,
amending pains crashing parties for
the soul. Fever’s sulk in the arctic
melting accomplishments of the
chill. Refereeing retreats through
historical perspectives gained
ignoring the past. Judging weight in
wont of a coda coloring perceptions
of import. Rearing a prospectus taking
hold of chimerae by the scruff of the
everyday. The sensational tang
compartmentalized, once indexed in
a subliminal dip to the depths rising
to find the surface replete. Effectually
lacking but nonetheless as far as one
can see.

crux delicti

A symbol putting blood into a fragile economy
of motion. Image of a fall presuming a tone
taken for ransom in a voice of people clustered,
throughout perceptions of chaos in the order’s
stomach for the experience living in the large.
Downshifting into riot gear for the climb out of
as into the swagger of either/or. A jump the gun
is ill prepared for. Rearing prospects in a box
closed for keeping secrets, with a slight chill to
the touch of elements wandering off cue. From
fears the floating won’t last for the descent into
reasons lost. A balancing act whetted to perform
entropy’s bidding, on banana peels slipping from
sight of land. The dilapidation of states of mind
fostering a future fluidity, skipping the blink
for a gaze straight ahead of its time to
emerge from the fathoms.


Magisterial wits lost in tubercular debut
out of breath’s goodness, spreading secrets
in the deep cuneiform of the day. Thinning
the accents with hush’s cleaver. A
compunction prefaced as if the rock upon
which a church is built, to better stomach
the incongruities baiting bears with
hyperboles of perfection. Beyond the
islands and out to a sea of sensations,
smuggling serendipities beneath the bubbles
made to linger for cover of darkness. The
unkempt in a fashion show of elements. The
previous tenants of the condolences. Flaunting
their complexity in a blend of anecdotes
riding the rush of air, the sweep of the collage
put to memory’s moorings, taking fragile leaves
of absence to redemption of the haze from the
anathema. A breath taken unawares by an air
of importance under atmospheric pressure
to perform.


A soporific variety show of dancing eyelids
signalling ships offshore to sink. Over the
same ground for going on centuries. The
gist of a plunge to the bass line of a swan
song. A calm fashioned from cardboard.
Requiem as preface, shooting stars from
skies thought safe to suppose.

Within a picnic of time in a bubble,
hawking tickets to the burst. To clear the
air of aftermath. The break of day’s
promise to reveal a motive. Where quiet
grows ears for what’s missing from news
of the word. The sampler of intrigue in a
whiff chasing magic carpets, to feet wiped
clean of fingerprints.

A stuff of life getting wet in colors. Silhouettes
guiding light to reason. An urbane renewal
of investment in an old constituency, to
reinforce a shift of sands to center stage.
Ascribing volition to a quantum leaped with
a mere gesture. Weighing in on scales tilted
to soothe nerves in the eerie foyer of the


Magnanimous gravel pelting molehills, at tangents to regrets roaming the savannah for revenge. The duplicitous with a single stroke traversing a body of etiquette, getting down to where it hurts the little at large saying boo. Stuffing the gourd of consent to the anomalies, with tokens of affection lost for the metered destinies of the grind. The apoplectic fizzle in the vastness, taking issues to their sleepy wheeze in reminiscence burping babies on the doorstep. Fragile monuments to the duration of winter lost upon the quickened, to the sense of the wobble of the bellwethers holding the fort down to a promise. A nominal swagger to the sway of the trees in the story built of bones.

Philip Byron Oakes is a poet living in Austin, Texas. His work has appeared in Blackbox Manifold, gobbet, Cordite Poetry Review, among other journals. His third volume of poetry, ptyx and stone, (white sky ebooks) is upcoming.
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