I turned twenty
in the attic
of a Buddhist

by my inability
to move
the hands

Of a cold
watch face
by faith


While meditating
I hope I do not

have a visulation
that demands

I get up to get
my notebook

and write it down.
I get up to get

my notebook
and write this down.


Working in a quick-hardening medium
creates many half-truths.


Do not circle your words too rapidly.
How could the fish swim through?


How to shake
the sky?

How to catch
the truths

that fall
all around?

Like a monkey!


Start stepping
fast and

How can you
jump on
the train

If you are not
stepping fast
and high?


How does a man




Here I am again
–so I see
–empty or much too full?
of them?
–of them
even the shadows?
–including our own
I see

Where do I look?
–to the left and right
–truth and light
and of them?
–your outer lives
to teach?
–to teach
I see

Once I was
–and how is this?
I owned the night
–say the moon?
say the moon
as the faces grew we shared
–of the clouds?
of the clouds
–I see

Must we numb to feel?
–not of truth
to give?
–not of inner sights
but truth is large
–as is your soul
I see

But distance is watching
–as are your thoughts
I see

And why must we burn?
–it is written
that is not enough
–is what you have done enough?
I see

When will I fly?
–when will you walk?
I see


Consider every act a gift.
Give it to yourself.
Lose yourself.
Find yourself.
You will never lose

You have It right now
and cannot see It.
It must be very magical
and powerful.

It is.
It is.

You can look
at people
if you want.

You can touch
if you want.

You can say it,
it can be said.

You can do it,
it can be done.

You are you.
You cannot fail at that
can you?

You know what
has to be done.
You are doing it.
How do you know
you know
what has to be done
and are doing it?

You know.
That is why you are
doing it.

Ask yourself
to do
everything you do
and give it to yourself
until you realize
it has always been
you have been
giving it to
and you that has been
giving it.

I have always been me
but I have been so busy
being me
that I never
noticed me.

Then I noticed me
being me
so I tried
not to
try and be me
and just
be me.

Isn’t it ridiculous?
I certainly do not
want it.

I stop

Image credit:Joey Kyber

After a rather extended and varied second childhood in New Orleans (street musician,

psych tech, riverboat something-or-other, door-to-door poetry peddler, etc.), Matt

Dennison finished his undergraduate degree at Mississippi State University where he won

the National Sigma Tau Delta essay competition (judged by X.J. Kennedy) and placed

third in the Southern Literary Festival for fiction. He is the author of Kind Surgery, from

Urtica Press (Fr.) and Waiting for Better, from Main Street Rag Press. His poetry has appeared

or is forthcoming in Verse Daily, Rattle, The National Poetry Review, Bayou Magazine, Autumn

Sky Poetry Daily, DIAGRAM, The New York Quarterly Magazine, Modern Haiku, Whale Road

Review, The Inflectionist Review, The Spoon River Poetry Review, San Pedro River Review,

The G.W. Review, Gargoyle, Slipstream, Midwest Quarterly, Saranac Review, Sheepshead Review,

Blue Earth Review, Pembroke Magazine, Tulane Review, Chiron Review, Steam Ticket, Redivider

and Cider Press Review, among others. His fiction has appeared in ShortStory Substack, THEMA,

GUD, The Blue Crow (Aus), Prole (UK), The Jersey Devil Press, The Wondrous Real,

and is forthcoming in Story Unlikely.



He has also made short films with Michael Dickes, Swoon, Marie Craven and Jutta