My poems “Memorial Days” and “Alpine” appear in the issue Issue 10:2 of Literary Matters, along with new writing “ranging from former U.S. Poets Laureate to a current High School Senior,” including Chris Childers, Rhina Espaillat, Gregory Fraser, Emily Grosholz, Sam Gwynn, Rachel Hadas, Mark Halliday, Ernest Hilbert, TR Hummer, Julie Kane, Kjerstin Anne, Ted Kooser, Hailey Leithauser, Amit Majmudar, Eric Pankey, Linda Pastan, Pindar, Fransisco de Quevedo, Chelsea Rathburn, Rilke, David J. Rothman, Richard Rankin Russell, Charles Simic, Dave Smith, Matthew Buckley Smith, Alicia E Stallings, Timothy Steele, William Walsh, and C. Dale Young. Follow the link to read.
The park’s in bloom, its gate seeping honeysuckle.
I work to shed some flab I gained last winter.
It’s a year since I spoke at my father’s grave
Before bayonets and brass bands for his memorial.
Twenty-four years of loss I had to disinter
And put back again with a smile and a wave.
I can hardly remember what I thought or said.
My gravity’s art weakens and uncoils.
Eased, what was caught to my orbit drifts.
I slough skin and clip nails, scrub iron pans of fat,
Pick up blue Doritos bags, purple soda cans,
Some disorder obvious, some imperceptible.
I keep too many books—some his, half still unread,
My house a vault piled up with pointless spoils,
Acquired or passed down, some stolen, or gifts.
What’s in them? Hearts and wars, cities knocked flat,
My father’s marks, lists, sketches, small plans,
Lives that in time became impossible.
Ernest Hilbert is the author of three collection of poetry, Sixty Sonnets, All of You on the Good Earth, and Caligulan, which was selected as winner of the 2017 Poets’ Prize. He lives in Philadelphia where he works as a rare book dealer. He writes about books for The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and The Hopkins Review. His poem “Mars Ultor” will appear in Best American Poetry 2018.