An Other by Trish Phelps

Our singular oils: if you look well, aptly,

you may witness where they,

though pressed with intent to collide,

still hold their solitude


hems in the sand,

irrefutable composition.

Yet the eyes on birds’ wings

Can’t tell us apart,

(And dump indiscriminately)

And the swords on atom’s sides

Fell strangers within our own bodies, for

we may, all at once, be strange

and yet


Relativity by Trish Phelps

I think I understand:

You don’t have much attention left

As there’s so much dusting to do

On all the items accrued which you haven’t used lately.


And I’ve been told

Suicide is a luxury problem

Involving, too much time, and / or too many things

Still somehow not filling the holes in your heart.


And so I wondered, what difference between luxury and poverty,

Hot and cold, extremes, hurled out of balance?

Is it insensitive to only note their similarities?:



And why is it that

It is so very easy to not drink water when we are well,

So to fall ill,

And how difficult it is to simply drink water

When we are ill,

To become well?


And when I asked,

“How can we repair?”


He replied, with a shrug,

“If you can’t seem to drink water for yourself, start with filling a glass for someone else.”

We do not have the particulars: by Trish Phelps

Floating in the blue on our bellies,

Limbs suspended in wonderment as we watched

A stingray revealed beneath the sunken, smooth blanket of sand,

Shedding its fine sheath and gliding into that abyss

I drew to when the night was almost

Enshrouding the sea’s tremendous, rolling movement

Where I and it were nearly smothered in dark,

Inviting the dances of our vibrance

In purple hue one afternoon,

Descending to the tepid shore

From identically temperate atmosphere,

Melding each hand, neck, bird, and swell of water,

Curving and collapsing on the rocks again,

Diligently smoothing their coarseness

In the distance,

Swelling its enormous mouth

To arise and swallow

The Earth from which it came.

Without Option by Trish Phelps

There was no other place to be but the rock.

The time spent there,

Though panicked by some concern


Why is my body not connected entirely,

As it is usually, or rather, in the same way,


Why do I seem not to have the strength

In my legs

As they tend to have, usually, typically,

Or, rather,

Why am I not doing as I tend to

Normally do, previously?


It was bliss--

As, for once, for some amount of irrelevant time,

I knew precisely and simply where exactly

I ought to be:

On the rock, indisputably,

For no particularly evident reason--

Which was perhaps

Precisely what made it so.

Trusting Trumpets by Trish Phelps

Midnight, plus. There is brief oil in the lamp.

When it goes, we will see what flames may

burn from our spirits.


We devoted a day to sitting cross legged on the docks,

braiding our own meandering manes.

The breeze became our breath, the lake our limbs.

Our skin deepened with the sun to greet the dusk.

Do not think of tomorrow,

but think of tomorrow.


The windows are aged in dirt, it is the Earth,

Yet the skies may be imagined wholly

through any small fissure peered:


Her waves came from intrinsic, aporetic wonder--


“It is what you do, and do what you don’t,”




“Dearest Arthur,


It is midnight, plus. There is brief oil in the lamp. When it goes,

I will see what flames may burn from my spirits.


Does the humidity wedge you to the air today? Do you shed your skin, or does it migrate to dirt?

Has your pup licked your hand of late, his intertwined salivas cooling your skin as they release

each other’s limbs to ascend the vast air surrounds you?”


“And if I seek faint trumpets in the wind

Over vast grass valleys and hills,

Would you listen to hear?”


“And if what I’d like to bring back to you

Wasn’t tangible,

Would you reach to feel?”