It Came in the Open – Clifford Brooks

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Christ came twice, then again
and upended
unrest in spite
of humans beings hung
in suspicion.
Unnoticed now – now
on the way
to Emmaus, Ellijay,
Austin:
a white heron glides
across water
that forms a wet sheet
between our safety
and Ed Gein.

In jest, the expanse (the Open),
I believe in nights,
serious lilac and light
on the nape
of lady-necks.
They, delicious bouquets,
Christ finds
them in the nave.
Childless, raising countless children,
placid water cracks
and waffles out
in perfect circles.
Babies feast on dragonflies.

Wooden stairs, a maple
bowed as an arbor.
The Trinity is speaking,
and no one within earshot
can overlook poverty.
Opulence, the comedy
of cornbread and shrimp
the size of a fist,
terrors, and hands held
in prayer.
Eyes lift open and untie
gifted moments
instead of flickering
(fingering) off aesthetically-convenient
atheist, nihilist,
murdered,
disbelieved you and I
are.

God’s lips pull
the wind’s memory
from the past.
In the present
temporarily,
then
whistled out
without fear,
trembling,
or doubt

About the contributor: Clifford Brooks was born in Athens, Georgia His second full-length poetry volume, Athena Departs: Gospel of a Man Apart, as well as a limited-edition poetry chapbook, Exiles of Eden, were published in 2017. His first poetry collection, The Draw of Broken Eyes & Whirling Metaphysics, was re-issued in August 2018. Evergreens, his second chapbook, will be released by Lucid House Publishing in 2019. Clifford is the founder of The Southern Collective Experience, a cooperative of writers, musicians and visual artists, which publishes the journal of culture The Blue Mountain Review and hosts the NPR show Dante’s Old South. He is on the faculty of The Company of Writers, and provides tutorials on poetry through the Noetic teaching application.

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