Andrew K. Peterson

Abandoned Projects of the Greenway

Let’s stand together to look upon a llama farm
                                                                		   	Small words
Slow intention between relations
but without the llama, country snow
mist, or maybe with the llama, the way
some observations go un-chatted back at
Szabo Greenway the night before New Year’s  

Your mouth says a lot about you,
as it paints out the world, stripe by star 
             in a timeless kiss to end all midnights

Because there are trees in the light, 
here are trees in the night
because like kisses  
taken in as cold triggers 
bolt-like catches, yellowy napes 
lifting injured, inch-ward, outward –
opens on to all that’s passible 

Encircling the gate, and the llamas go


When a child says
“I don’t want to see flowers.
I want to see a bird die.”
You best believe her.

Turn to next page.
Don’t want to be 
the you responsible 
for nothing but your own 
unutterable suffering? 

Return to earth, 
try again.
Just as the sky drops from a wing
so it began, so it begins

Frame In Kind

“Following these ways
to find you there, I feel
I’ve gotten to this place
& that one’s real” – Bill Berkson

You’re in the bedroom making celestial spines
Landslide bleeding thru the cracks
copper moon wire jewels buffalo bones
indica couch cool night breeze invites itself in
over Occasional Fagins, Twilight Times
equals a squall of leg flesh, Shades of Man, 
maybe A Hymn? Imagine myself nowhere 
but here. The body the experiment recreating 
too much while you create another, that one’s real (?). 
Heavy equipment b-bouncing up the middle, 
heavier days ahead, for sure. Behind closed doors 
no sound reckons; reconciliation, devotion, 
between the autonomous and real. (Jolt. Spin off.) 
Having got to this space: lighter touches. 

Stevie, take the wheel.

Como me quieres, como te quiero.
Con todo el mundo? Si, si.
Con todo, con todo el mundo.

One last tap on the drum rim kit 
green sirens summoning 
our undone-up real frames 
rhythming in kind

18 : vi : 21

In Deference to a Great Simplicity

Whitling a smoke break 
the lazy lumberjack 
in a cozy bed of leaves 
snoozes under his next victim
but can’t find the line in 
Stone about little otters… 

Moon-soaked curling rises 
blond botanically bright 
with temptation’s 
common scale: arrows 
thrown every which way.  

The body’s self-perpetuating 
oils (secrets) bond with autumn 
apricot, baobab, jojoba …
     but still can’t find the line 
     in Stone about the otters. 
Suffer in silence and silence 
suffers within. Resistance 
swells, root-parched 
wheels pantomime 
mushroom blood – 
silence carves, 
absorbs into pattern. 

Then he found the otter line:
     not what he remembered, 
but simple and sweet 
in deference to the slow journey:  
     awakens impulse  
     to a moment’s stolen rest 

“Sing little otters; don’t be afraid.” 

The nouns all fall away 
like rain. The verbs 
still have their say, 
plenty to whittle and do 
doop dee-doo do

…and I’ll Be Your Server Tonight

Flowing away into anticipation’s night out fold. Tips in hip pocket from doing the work balancing water. Bouncer casing IDs at the Silhouette, does he see what I don’t? smoke-rim skips free, tripping into black, feeling so… I don’t know… anyway…
Seven-minute guitar solo in open G for things that are open:
Public letters, windows in spring, 24-hour stores, faced club sandwiches, welcoming arms, books, robes, and shut cases because obviousness, doors and drawers, gates to pens where animals have escaped, door policies, your mouth, parks, tulips, auction, drawbridges while the boat sails under, the beginning chapter, sources, borders when there are no borders, marriages, society, mic nights, bell indicating beginning of day trading, court procedures, something broken, a fresh fracture or wound, questions, positions & enrollments, water, air, fire, a grave before descent, a sore, weave pattern, an account, a circuit, tunings, secrets, sesame (by magic), events for the public, bars at fancy events, a musical’s debut is called grand, something up for debate or to interpretation, your mind, your eyes, your heart, your fly (unbeknownst to you), Tom Petty’s trip into the great wide, something without limit or boundary, an ending that hasn’t really ended yet
Flowing out of folds, 
anticipation tips in 
pocket, watch the 
bouncer balance
water at the Model 
does he see what  
I don’t, I won’t be 
served by fear of 
this communion
what my name is
… and I’ll be your server tonight

Andrew K. Peterson is an editor and author of five poetry books, most recently A blue nocturne notebook (Spuyten Duyvil Press, 2021). A chapbook The Big Game Is Every Night was mailed to the White House in 2017 alongside other publications from Moria Books’ Locofo Chaps as collective protest. Another chapbook bonjour Meriwether and the rabid maps (Fact-Simile) was part of an exhibition on poets’ maps at the University of Arizona Poetry Center. His poetry has also appeared as part of The Earth Archive exhibition at RISD Museum in Providence. A co-founder/editor of the online lit journal summer stock, he received an MFA in Poetry from Naropa University's Kerouac School. He lives in Boston.
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