CGP 7: Johanna Poems
by Ben Mazer (22 pp. Saddle-Stitched)

“Whose poems are these? It looks like the heads of a hundred people made them, yet there is no disjunction, no coil of expression, no tragic dissolution here that fails our understanding. Don Juan, at the end of his life entrapped in a mineshaft, might have called these poems up to us. We need more of these poems, quickly, and we are in a state of distinguished penury now, for only one person, Ben Mazer, can supply them, and however much he provides there will always be gasping for more.”

--Stephen Sturgeon

Indian Summer
by Ben Mazer

This forgotten weather lets me down.
The unexpected slow boat out of summer
burns with color and complete. Missing only
all the words that needed to be said
which yet they are full of mostly now,
the purpled shriveled trees, standing and waiting,
those long low roads where day and evening cross
in an admonition like a longing.

It is a cipher, nothing else will do
to still the fullness in air or cement,
black or blue in shadow, no eye hear
any sign, smiling in the sighing of sorry
flower, laughing in the corn
like fairy tales, telling us what to do.