Keith Melton – Five Poems

Keith Melton holds a Master’s Degree in City Planning from Georgia Tech and a BA in Economics and International Studies from the American University. He previously has served as Director of Planning and Program Development for the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Region IV Office; as well as VP of Development for both the Atlanta Economic Development Corp. and the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce (Atlanta). His poems have been published in numerous periodicals.


A Glimmer Past Midnight

Epiphany, followed by dream
And the snore of the dog who loves me 
His furry, solitary fixation  
A rock once asleep, cannot be moved.
 
But me, not so much.  Tossing and turning
A deasil in fitted sheets.  Clockwise
In a prison of my own making
The drill down frightening
 
Repetition, looking askance
Looking to prayer, to offer soliloquies to God
Asking for Peace 
Expecting sheep to populate
 
The ceiling
To count themselves into oblivion
The narcotic of repetition
The good shepherd in the pasture of dream.
 
Perhaps
(Exercising the demons earlier would be a better strategy)
But who knows
Betting the over/under, win or lose
 
A path, an inspiration   
A glimmer past midnight 
Something atypical 
In starlight, an epiphany might survive.


Thrift Store

The inflection point
Is the Zen of the machine; the gravitas
Of Utility
Maintaining the necessary margins
 
Knowing
Everyday worth is something. 
Turning out bowls, plates; the familiar items
Before layered clouds.
 
Distance repeating
Make up the time; in a hand me down world
Consider the calculus
Get your GED
 
Make something out of nothing
Dream instead of scheme 
Horizon
Marked down, time to clear away
 
The everyday things.
Epiphanies 
In the corrugated pieces, the chapters
Taped together; starting over, before the sun sets
 
And the stars come out.
The bargain bin
The hold table, the necessary things.
Always the needy
 
Observing
The time it takes
The meek to inherit the earth
To wait in line; to rummage a life.


Morning Comes

I owe this woman something.
A change of address, patience on moving day.
Up so early I wonder
But there is no sleeping late. 
 
Not now
The sun is rising, I must not misbehave
I must not dally. 
A sentence resonates  
 
Cast out in the vastness of sky
Today
A kind of blank verse catechism 
The waking sonnet
 
A chakra opening
A course correction, teaching, pulsing, pushing
The words into line. 
Distance suddenly closer; so many things
 
Possible; epiphany
In the clouds, the birds, the blurry trees 
God is sublime
Dawn, salting the earth.


Sunrise

Brevity in a box of blue, striations
Rippling, faux to the eye His travertine
In a painted sky, a fast elegance
In the void, a flight of cloud to witness

The carpenter’s blood? The scapular of dawn
In riven calculus unstill, the suns
Tribute a throat of rose, a predicate
Blossom to ring His bolt of fire; our fate

Asking how many days to walk the earth?
No answer given, the skies clever truth
Disguised, each cloud’s levity scorn less
Adrift, a degree of solace from the bruise

Of night’s stitching; our fate, a distant ledge
A skyline of dark robes to the bone yard?


Diner

Playing hangman with a waitress we order coffee
When starlight in a nose ring
Comes the revelation–
Anything goes this late at night. Offbeat lovers
From the all night bars, beat mechanics
And phone solicitors

Rock-a-billy boys with blue tattoos
And red eyes that look like Mars.
The unfettered mash of the curb, 2 am
A shred of pierced humanity,
A franchise of bad dreams;
A short stack to fix the world.

And like she might need some company
Later, we hail a gypsy cab
Musing of better tips, decent hours
And no she don’t like blues
Before her building, when neon stutters like my heart–
So call me she says, sometime at the diner.

 

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