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Featured Work

Original, published work by P. D. Kline. Selections for Winter 2024

white stallion running on beach 6 24 23.jpg

SNOW

Two inches of climate change stopped by today,

stuck around, and decided to stay the night. After all,

it'd taken till mid-January to make its way to this

Mid-Atlantic state, plus all the fuss and attention

is fun to watch. Back in Minnesota, no one seemed

to notice. Here, three days ETA whipped up squalls

of newscast leads and breathless social media posts.

Two days out, the shelves were low on bread and,

dear God help us, toilet paper.

Then again, why not stay a few days, check out jobs,

like school bus driver when schools reopen,

or door-to-door snow shovel salesman before

it melts, or head of snowplow attachment

for when they get the truck started. Perhaps

political speech writer for fixing blame and cursing

Armageddon, or government drug pusher

for frostbite vaccines. After all, it could take

another year to make it here again.

[by P. D. Kline, Pea Soup. 2024]

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Galaxies 11 23 13.jpg
Galaxies 11 23 13.jpg

PRISM BREAK

I love the way the meadow grasses

sooth the bottoms of my feet,

and brushing 'cross the tops of trees

in wishful thought imaginings

is something close to ecstasy...

....but not until I learn the way

to loose the prism from my eyes

will I let go of what I've done

and see the piddling splash

it makes in oceans far below.

Without the weight I lift my hands

to touch the light of stars

and stretch my arms beyond new worlds

in soaring heights that leave me free

to brush the tops of galaxies.

[P. D. Kline. Straining to Catch Every Leaf, p. 88. 2017.]

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"A Rushing Mighty Wind"

When I turned a deaf ear to the world

     I heard the butterfly scream.

When I shut my eyes to the prize

     I saw the orchid throwing up.

When I pulled back the curtain of Life

     I saw the smiling eyes of Death,

Or was it the curtain of Death

     and the smiling eyes of Life?

Woe to the poet who sees

     what he does not want to see,

who showers in the dust of bones

     that bore his boyhood dreams,

who feels the vacuum aspiration

     of his dying nation's soul,

who is the breaking bough that falls

     with "baby, cradle and all."

[P. D. Kline. Straining to Catch Every Leaf. 2017]

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