3 Poems by Dave Shortt

Dave Shortt  is a longtime writer (from the USA) whose work has appeared over the years in a number of print & electronic literary-type venues, including The Ekphrastic Review.  More of his poems can be found in recent or archived issues of Blaze Vox, Blackbox Manifold, Ygdrasil, Peculiar Mormyrid & the print anthology Emanations: Chorus Pleiades. Another is scheduled to run later this year in Silver Pinion.


The Gemini

‘the stars in all their creation,’
sharing the binary, the demiurge, pneuma,
streaked with interchanges
of particles & antiparticles,
an immortal valence
behind the scenes, a navigable
& psychological Black Sea, sailed
in heat of mortal pugilistic sweats

the probability mixture of Leda’s egg
dualizes the odds of abolishing piracy
in this or another lifetime,
photons scatter from the idolized sun our
youth’s pagany ticking away
said nothing to Medea
under the uncertainty of entanglement
of constellated chemistries

‘dark’ energy & gravity
fraternally splitting one apart,
the sound reaching into a throat or page verbatim,
trapping along the way other-dimensional births
of ours, correlated in bundled signs
from spring’s last weeks
imprinting fibrously from their astral origin,
(boreal) guides guiding
symmetrically to Argo
the anomalies of singular will
which had come down
on top of it & into ‘the swan
in the background,’
the creative dialectic from the difference,
the air we breathe
stirred up with mockery & reverence,
embodiment of a new epic of
travels into missing halves
desperately trying to fit together
in a spirit of coincidence

from a dyad, life grew
eventually waning into inclusion
of all its taxonomic specialties
into a scar, a pact
between all the stitches
running the length of another
distant universe
where Hades & Olympus were knitted

the flipside isn’t you, or you
synchronize with non-local recognitions
which get here slightly bent
as they flesh out into a bi-polar myth
whose veracity could be shadowboxed, as
on love’s infinite sine wave
it superposes, almost
one’s own motives

blood’s adventure won’t dissipate
in star- or sun-worship’s jokey leisure, a nod
to the solar barque
crossing an apostle-less ecliptic,
its ports of call (12)
are unique fortunes, one
is a month’s worth of words
passing back & forth
reflecting on their identity



800º C with bellows, & beads
tapped off, collected

brittle or cutting edge,
dissected forces visible or invisible,
smiths’ camps scouted industriously
fit bourneside cliffs & glowing forests
on specialty necks & wrists
migrating through glade & field
always bladed wound throughout
cores extruded from Tesla
induced from mystery malleable if stronger, stranger
no less cautiously beating earth
as turf & terminal
ductility rarely able to afford magical experiment
alloying aeronautical & astral functions
uncompromising metallurgist errors illuminated by
treaties bending through alchemist millennia
using all the various & common guages
everyday motors of evaporating eat & drink
indifferent to temperature, Saturnine coolness
to Venus’ uncondensed cauldron forebodings
skillets in which feelings sauté
love conducted as anger switches off, alternating
in a labor dispute’s magnetism
chipped flints returning like scabs
as lighters offer lights to the children
attracted to engineering’s thermostatic control
of manifolds of green,
smelting about to create desire’s stirred hard surface
that pinkens, bonding weakly to unreasonable electrons
a steady & critical pour into waves
non-bubbling in spin or sin
solenoids gland-like motivating electrode confidences
& push/pull emotions coiling, bashed into
shields pierced by bone that drank up
convenient mountainsides of malachite
‘softer gold’ surpassing in lightness & openness of
its labyrinths of information,
bloodied, the blood again
spearheaded aims
with supplementary mollusc & crustacean crystals,
between whose shells an orangish energy difference
in the pit of the stomach
plays out in the sparkling, blue-green,
clawed & gorged-on pit
where untarnished ideas were thrown out
inhumed in crags of geologic hardware
where they were left in honor of electricity & power
as would be realized in currents of thought,
wired consciousness receiving through its infrastructure
the cautious care of isotopes whose characters
beg to arrive at the 29 chances, bonded like miners
going missing as circuits blow
& verdigris shows off the quality of life
reheated to 1083º C, when poured off as liquid
the heart was annealed
before being beaten into a thin wire
its rare sparks forming the molten core
of stars, cuprous hair cold-worked
in affection which began moving superconductively
under control within its metal
& barely arriving in the nutrients of animal light
before a fuse melted,
‘etchings on a chalice,’
coinages & weapons liquify
into clanging goats & ghosts,
passionate solderings of sunset, as who?
is clambering across ore-laden bluffs
whose virgin upthrustings are being worked,
forced through conduits of aged cultural demiurge
in the infinity of polarized attractions
hermetically grounding at



underground cathedral, coral tower of the blood ocean,
spiny dragon bowing all day, supporting
even the mistakes

‘these things were here since conception,’ or
like structures indigenous to Sirius
sent radiographically through space
touching an ovum in immaculate discharge
of inaudible ossification

multi-million year guarantee ‘for the life
of the family,’ phylogenetic
uprightness which became teachable, delicately
to take on masses of titanium
formed into ball & socket interfacings
of evolution-hypotheses

sweeping across the skyline like a crane,
lifting from 4-legged sprawl a 2-year-old
vouchsafed a roof as Hercules looms, looking on
under the command of disc’d mountain ranges,
under the injurious sportsmanship of pelvises
trying to score despite curvatures,
misalignments, osteoporoses

fate & motivation are slumping
as hard-bargained-for steps are taken
closer to where grandchildren
graze like beasts of burden broken
into the lazy obsolescence of pets,
far, far out to pasture
in fields of unscorched, skeletal silicon

‘a system of embodied pain’
dislocated from a perfect t’ai chi home
considered ‘used’ from day 1

honest peddler if not mountebank
traveling off-balance,
whose twisted ways only the sky could straighten,
stretching the biped towards a celestial opening
sought by the top of the head
yearning for stature,
while earth like a mother teaching
the sciatic nerve to walk,
was trying to create a bulwark of the back
against snakes & slugs
prone to slide into the feelings

will absurd Hamlet ever know?
picking up this tiny stupa, examining
what only the hips of Kuan Yin
will slip into?

architecture outside of whose depths
derelict insects hum & crawl like
chaotic circuitry

the search only girdles
neurons sometimes threading
vertical conduits of spiritual information

as people march & shuffle,
days continue to be manipulated
with ice & wings,
as ascetics & survivalists recline
in wildernesses of slithering clouds

& a horse nodded along
in empathy & suffering, halting
before ‘an idea’s translucent ride’
still yoked to tweaks
felt down in the lumbar
as loose warnings from
a prehistoric, galloping skull

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