LITERATURE

OHIO EXPLORATIONS

Here is our shared mind,

journeyers' collage sets.

We are not cooler-trough

​sandwiches at mammoth gas

stations, grayed dandelions

​on winding hills navigated,

the swarming campus' night

spirit, graveyards on bricked

fringes of college towns; we

are not them but have

consumed all, grappling

at mysteries in alley cracks,

mugs briefly gleaming

from tavern panes,

as we pass.

- Lee Boyle  (original version​

​published by The Penguin Review)




CHAUTAUQUA: NIGHTS ON THE BEACH

Chautauqua’s tiny hills, stone steps,
branches arch over. A child’s chapel
keeps meditative exploration
sacred in me, my small figure
carrying a raft towards a big clock

on the beach. I like when night

starts in, makes views hard; my

parents squint to see me scamper

over grass in the distance. Always,

I submit, running back to them.

I compare my inflated raft to clouds,

feels like I lift a sky like blankets
under little fingers, striped shirt.

Bathroom under the looming clock,

I drop my new stuffed bear in a toilet

by accident, pull him out, 

run away.

- Lee Boyle (original version

​published by Leveler Poetry)




ESTABLISHED

Now that I am smart,

now that I am a clever

​guy who pretends to

waltz, uncaring and

​cozy, toward death

with a suit jacket and

a well-tied tie, now

that I have a podium

to speak from, authority

that creases your folded

mind, now that I am older,

dressing better, more

impatient, important,

more out-loud with sharp

opinions, now that people

must respect me, now

that I demand them to,

now that I have grey

rivers of hair, maroon,

pressed collars, shiny,

black shoes, my own

house and wife, my

own publications,

solely on talent, not

a plethora of titles,

degrees, certificates,

years of being alive,

academic rewards, etc,

now that I have been

detached, arrogant,

mismatched, introverted,

extroverted, in the in-crowd

systematic, submissive,

traditional, rebellious,

conforming, angry,
accepting, ambiguous,

ambitious, and have

given it all away, won

it all back, given it all

away, now that others

have defined what's

good, what's not, now

that I grew up and still

don't understand, now

that I blaze, giant torch

at the blackboard, as

little matches sit at

desks and flicker, now

that I stand before you

and you sit before me,

now that I am established...

- Lee Boyle (original version

published by Off The Coast)




SLEEPWALKING KID

​Once, I dreamt my fa​ther

back to life.

Sea green robes

around him, he met me at

my bus stop. He smiled,

muttered something, and

walked with me, up the

street, to home. His eyes

still sunk into black rings

on his face from

when he was sick.

I, once, sleepwalked

to that same bus stop when

he was still alive, practicing

for when he died.

​- Lee Boyle




MY DEFINITION OF LOVE

Love, these days, opens vastly

in me, star colanders in wintry sky,

a rough breeze's introduction

to hillside meadows,

grass blades flipping,

shining, parting my hair

a million different ways.

​- Lee Boyle




CITY COMING

East rumbles; sticks

shift in spruces.

Infinite office towers

store cabinets of

cabinets. Car snouts

dig road. Tunnels snuff

smoke through bridge

frills and antenna webs.

Red sky dabs windshields

on stony long-hauls across

endless maps. A thousand

motors buzz behind

fuel-drunk torches;

tires sling trek

pebbles into darkness.

- Lee Boyle




BEING FOURTEEN

Emerge from blank

houses, cross nowhere

neighborhoods, stone

alleys over nameless

creeks, to hidden liquor

shops. Dig out your

pennies for a brown

bag of blue sharks,

green worms. Escape

to sewer tunnels under

railroads, factories,

collar-less dog corpses

rotting above on

vibrating tracks.

- Lee Boyle




APRIL 25, 2010

Never have I seen a day more

beautiful. The wind slugs the

American flags at car dealerships;

the hills and trees glow,

dark green. I cannot press

myself to put of the windows

as I drive. The rain is fresh.

The sky rolls out, just for me,

in Columbiana, Ohio.

​- Lee Boyle (original version

published by PKA's Advocate)








​CRATERS OF

THE MOON

​-Jack Boyle