Four Poems by Kevin McLellan

Kevin McLellan

Kevin McLellan

Kevin McLellan is the author of the full-length poetry collections, Ornitheology (The Word Works) and Tributary (Barrow Street). He also authored the book objects, Hemispheres (Fact-Simile Editions) and [box] (Letter [r] Press), the chapbook Round Trip (Seven Kitchens Press) and his poetry appears in numerous literary journals. His prose appears in Jelly Bucket, The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, Lily Poetry Journal, Orca, Superstition Review, Timber, and Waxwing. Kevin is also Duck Hunting with the Grammarian Productions and his video, Dick (2020) appeared in the Tag! Queer Shorts Festival. Kevin lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


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

because the outside

air won’t let go:
even though the clouds

vindicate the ceiling





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.





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.





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.