Issue 20: Dave Shortt

N-fold Ode, ‘On Beauty’

the moon rises between the cypresses,

poets note their nights,

making metrics of their days, feet

that today

                      (after taking so many years of steps

away from pulses

torn apart in school

while learning to read & write

from the translated classics, as kids),

                              feet that today escorted

a potted ornamental lemon

(iambically?) into the garage

away from predicted frost,

an act possibly reminiscent

of Eros’ ‘tenderness for plants’

at that early age when flowers

of the looks of girl-peers

were constantly getting shoved in his face

olives fallen & left on the ground,

abandoned riches, ruins,

who can redeem them?

Orpheus? Kore?

from the oblivion of the seasons,

from the summers looked back on

while the hermaphroditism of artichokes

remains a mystery quietly settled,

water is wrung from atoms

unable to quench choral authority & austerity

animals still get torn apart,

vintages of self-knowledge

slosh around in delicate craters, dry & wet

was the sky's taste

acquired now by meteorology

forgotten dialogue grows inundated by lyrics,

irrigation by words is taught,

as blood (while respected) evaporates in vapidity

of course it makes no sense in utopia or parallelograms

unless they unfurl as tantalizing maps

Aphrodite Speechless Beauty

experiments with ambidextrous touches

beyond reach of one leftist lover,

one rightist lover,

how love, she reflects, must love its love-nests,

her ageless Paphos

is like a pacemaker built of soul

implanted in the heart's rockiest coast

Sappho on record

in terms of an overpopulated mainland,

wind & rain

settle into fragments

stabbing the mud,

trying to take over the East

‘fetal alcohol syndrome’

was smashed in ceramics held together

by ‘something to do’,

maenads were throwing radishes

when under the fasting sun

heroes rushed like intermittent streams

home from the games

Earlier Observables in Memory of Niels Bohr

electrons arrive at a new level

                          of eloquence

                            or mundane (expression)

atoms of free thought

  in a molecule of


  half-harassed from

   vulnerable positions that momentum

    spirits away into (                                          ),

 who'll change

   from the energy released?  vikings

 pacified, as in their new bibles

 they pick out kennings or (                                       )

 while one or more cosmic language

 argues against

 control of the right-now-isolated soul &

   love induced in

    very small worlds, the family

    put in its place, shamelessly

    or modestly coordinated in functions

                                  (                                          )

 half-real given

  (totalitarian) differentials chained

    in duality to (it)

                                   (like Garm),

 weapons of mass destruction

 testing consciousness, sleep

  is so close, sleep

  comes out of hiding,

  (un-) (im-) partial measuring device,

 dream heat of alpha waves telling

 possible quantum demise of



   (reverts to lead,





       ) keep earth spinning

    masculine feminine common neuter

    accelerated particles collision

(                                 ) behind their laws

(                                 )

    metaphysical increments

    a textbook element of (                        )

     shadowing their remaining days

       into posthumous regions

    ‘a land of no rivers’, blessed or possessing

     in one of its shells

     ample rainfall

     to provide the increase of its fields


(later observables)

 quantum of action when karma

 vibrates relation to tainted (                                 )

   neutron a

    white cross superposed on


      cloud chamber, tracks untainted

      tolerance such


       real number advances

         Galileo's earth, moving wavelengths

         of winter wheat

photons (                              ) supplement now

 & then an incarnation, ingot

from third


        spot) world line


     political fallout


                           ly) sealed

     room, heavy

  retorts, heavy seeds, a bomb

     is wanted, enough

  potatoes to feed an army, yellow?

         (uncertainty) cake open to integrate

  saltwater particles on all sides

  cellars stockpiled with

    potential calories, drums

    of water

  hog & onions conserved in

  what happened from the first slander

  (                                                                 )

  forced from new world

  rowing initial conditions

  deep keel works, provokes

 critiques of collapsed motives

 contemplate Tivoli cyclotrons

 faith in where you are



 unpredictable outcome of variables

superpower creations

in the end (                 ) this small thing

if it would be told,

anglo-saxon futuristic

  grossest usage

infinite calculations (equals) pacified nothing

 the physicists are allowed to enjoy

  as guestworkers of



(further observables)

self-conscious mark


                                         ) granite & uranium continuous


photo (                                ) sensitive plate in

                 (                                         )

 darkroom, backroom

     diplomacy suspected

stars of

                (Freya)  (con-


mother conditions  


                             (                        ) (complimenting)

                  the long night


                       ing) light


                  the self-

                     unconscious peace

                                              (                                        )


Dave Shortt is a longtime writer (from the USA) whose work has appeared over the years in numerous print & electronic literary-type venues, including Ygdrasil & Uut Poetry.  Recently, The Ekphrastic Review, Molly Bloom, The Journal, & Poetry Salzburg Review each published one of his poems.  In mid-2018 more are scheduled to appear in Peculiar Mormyrid & Knack Magazine.