Jeff Harrison

Lycisce consoles Cyprius

Were we to guess Actaeon at each hart, and did one hart address us, saying, where is her fount when that huntress lies among the perished devils?

Our Actaeon‏

Again disarranged, our Actaeon; a supernal's tooth, then our own. I am as many paces from this as from the moon. Actaeon had an Artemis; could we not have had a Circe, like those who served a wilier, luckier captain?

Actaeon to his hounds

I am a hart, and I was no fawn, and you, my hounds, proceed certain that this hart was no babe, nor pup, no pup of any of you, and certain that this hart is no brother of any of you, nor the captain of each.

These woods

Words and hounds, these woods; words, hounds, and a hart. Why hasn't he Scylla's hounds, who daren't rend their own? Words and hounds, these woods; words, hounds, a fount, its Miss, and Actaeon, a hart.

Poison to Actaeon

These herbs, grasses, blooms, shoots, meet for a hart, may be poison to Actaeon — oh, what is not poison to Actaeon! The fount such a poison, I was felled before my lips touched its waters. And my hounds, that did caper about me, will they prove poison to Actaeon, or will they caper about me still?

The hart for Actaeon

The moon will settle into graves and emerge from cupboards — having plashed the fount, what is past her? It is the hart for Actaeon, nowhere else. Do, hounds, your custom with the hart, then go into towers, and among yourselves raise battles.

Your Actaeon

From this morass hale me — we are your hounds, Actaeon; you are not forgotten. Nor are you forgotten by your Actaeon. I could be a hart throughout, brain to fell, for all the thought I give the moon in her fount.

Actaeon enough

Let, then, my hounds be violets — this hart Actaeon enough, violets are hounds enough — and let them murmur to one another in mild alarm. No alarm sounded for me at the fountain's side, and to whom do I murmur? Where is my one another? I will content myself with those violets — those violets, too, are Actaeon enough.

These fires

These fires I once caught up in my hands, smoothing them, counting them as already smoothed; and here I am a straw, a hart.

Say Actaeon

I'm as quick to say Actaeon as you are to say hart. Can't you hounds say Actaeon? Here and now, say Actaeon; look at this hart and say Actaeon. That you fall upon me I understand. Fall upon me, I understand, only say Actaeon.

Upon me

My hounds are upon me, and have you no hand for me? Send them away, set me aright, could a hart harm you?

Jeff Harrison has poems in all the issues of Otoliths except the second issue. He has publications from Writers Forum, Persistencia Press, and Furniture Press. He has e-books from BlazeVOX and Argotist Ebooks. His poetry has appeared in An Introduction to the Prose Poem (Firewheel Editions), The Hay(na)ku Anthology Vol. II (Meritage Press), The Chained Hay(na)ku Project (Meritage Press), Sentence: a Journal of Prose Poetics, Moria, Calibanonline, unarmed, Big Bridge, Word For Word, Xerography, Poethia, Nerve Lantern, and elsewhere. He lives in Dardanelle, Arkansas.
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