Four Poems by Kevin McLellan

Kevin McLellan

Kevin McLellan

Kevin McLellan is the author of: Tributary (Barrow Street); the chapbook Round Trip (Seven Kitchens), a collaborative series with numerous women poets; and the book arts project [box] (Letter [r] Press). The chapbook Shoes on a wire (Split Oak Press) is forthcoming. McLellan won the 2015 Third Coast Poetry Prize, and his poems have appeared in journals including: American Letters & Commentary, Colorado Review, Crazyhorse, Kenyon Review, Superstition Review, West Branch, Western Humanities Review, Witness, and several others. Kevin lives in Cambridge MA.

Chambers

The floor and
obdurate windows:

witnesses: the sky

appears much closer:
yet these orange

things (tulips,

facial scrub, and
lost lullabies) bring

about possibility: I

must apply extra
emollient

because the outside

air won’t let go:
even though the clouds

vindicate the ceiling

 

 

 

Firmament

The hat contains. I am
unable to make
a decision in the garden
about the garden.
The girth of prayer

eludes me again. I return
to the window. In one
room a same song
repeats or rather reenacts
a sky turning pink.

 

 

 

Nude

The hill is a way toward
the clouds. The clouds hang
like tee shirts and socks
on a line. Yesterday a hawk
flew low like a message.
I had waited until I thought
that messages can find

recipients like the hawk
found me. Today I walked
elsewhere. Here the air is also
still and the shadow of a tree
told me it yearns for more
definition. As if it’s always or
never the same disrobed hour.

 

 

 

Push

The recording of the dead girl
singing love songs in the café
reminded me that my throat
is a folding bird and I mustn’t
speak nor make utterances
until I’m convinced I know
it’s time. Oddly, this is connected

to you, mother. Our last attempt
you said, I don’t have a crystal ball
and I hung up. My hand trembled.
These indispositions. These mis-
givings. Your you and you
and you. The mirror can’t reflect
both of us and I must choose myself.