Sheila E. Murphy

Possessive Case

He asks her to be his
mirror. She demurs 
sans speech. He thinks
he hears a nod.

She finds herself less alone
than she has dreamed.
The house, replete with souvenirs 
of his, reduces her 

span of attention. He is attentive
and confirms her whereabouts 
with feigned confidence. 
She learns to laugh 

with not at and rarely 
alone. So much space
here and so little
between them. 

You May Be Entitled to Compensation

Said the post with red text I did not open.
Time to go to sleep apart from my habitual attachment.
The Dhammapada is as fresh as young roses.
Plural affection sprinkles my new heart.

Will the dreams bewilder me,
and will the pencil sketch anticipated 
lead to a desired indelibility?
Questions for gods set out on a platter

of treats not to be consumed,
but to remain decor and inspiration.
Follow me, said the beauty of a pure center.
I am drawn, say I repeatedly.

Compensation means agreement
I cannot agree unless the terms, etc.
Listen as you never have, and learn
as you will do. Tomorrow is a new past. 


Synecdoche Rhymes with Nothing that I Know

Semitones sound grand apart from piano motion why don't you just Gershwin your way  
through the maze of stalled routine

This is you in camera as seen through my eyes

You need energy to work energy to pronounce things energy to think things up

I stop by to check your pulse your storytelling absent connectivity of synapses I find you 
shimmering albeit separate from your life

The sole window is covered dark to keep you feeling safe to let you sleep as the longest day 
of the year approaches soon the shortest one

I learn to voice print all you hear your hearing is not good you need nutrition for the heart 
of intellect again again

I thumb through the white pages no longer physical and find you

Any day now school will no longer be in session you speak in code

Hypnotists are gathering in hope they may retrieve your transcendental brilliance

Integers do well on walls where they are featured in the bold white light

Litmus means this to you means this to me no telling how to translate what I keep what I have 
lifted out of the long string of celluloid 

Chemistry is all we are except for music

Hemispheric branding means no rodeo at all

Any form of diatonic wrinkling means we're missing only will to be eternal


My Pillow Lark, My Umpteenth Reason for Deciding to Belong
It won't be long now. For the time I have, I will revere you.
Center after center point.
You move the needle to the light. 

Sheila E. Murphy is an American poet who has been writing and publishing actively since 1978. Murphy is the recipient of the Gertrude Stein Award for her book Letters to Unfinished J. (Green Integer Press, 2003). Her most recent book is Golden Milk (Luna Bisonte Prods, 2020). Reporting Live from You Know Where won the Hay(na)Ku Poetry Book Prize Competition from Meritage Press (U.S.A.) and xPress(ed) (Finland). Also in 2018, Broken Sleep Books brought out the book As If To Tempt the Diatonic Marvel from the Ivory.
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