09 February 2008

Featured Poet: Chuck Stebelton

Chuck Stebelton's recent chapbooks include A Maximal Object (Mitzvah Press), Flags and Banners (Bronze Skull Press), and Precious (Answer Tag Home Press). He is author of Circulation Flowers (Tougher Disguises, 2005) and he works as Literary Program Director at Woodland Pattern Book Center in Milwaukee.


He would smile, quite unconsciously, as if in

anticipation of his coming translation which

resented muscle cars as much his coming

translations misrepresented birds. Shelley

nibbled some majoun. Percy at a kumquat.

When you have nothing more to say, just drive

gapers block and phone and drive back home

still with nothing to say. Say nothing to green

shiny flies that weave a strong gauze of smell.

To hot oxygen and gasoline on the buff marked

metal of your hood, leave both radios on loud

in your son's new 1975 Dragonmobile XR 508

with special radium transmission and three

bucket seats. Translated comforts into Beulah

land still don't say a word. Footfall to oboe

release someday. To all competition based

on names and the kindnesses of strangers.


I am a messenger stinking. In the offices
of tobacco I do not have a hold on hope.

A run on puny veins has got me all basenji.

The sidewalk is overrun with anchor teams.
The sidewalk has anchors galore in traction.

I shot on dusky pond. I scanned a magpie.

Jude's pet parrot was invited to lacerate
my cheek bone. Hardy, showing a black

bear its dear back, counts our pianist among
the headlights on the highway. Tiny prune

I no more understood the logic of this than
I understood how my pancreas worked.

That trip is like a memory cache. Standing
hygienic and chewing gum the day before

four star hotels were invented. A daily
remonstrance against the strictly hospital

clings to an adenoid every organ recital.


Asiatic dayflower is a commelina.

This flower grows on wooded slopes.

The fire pink is a catchfly of rocky hillsides.

Beautiful flowers of the coral gum.

Pickerel weed grows by shallow ponds.

Sundew, a bog plant, traps insects.

Bugle has long rooting stolons.

The hepatica is also called liverwort.

Dutchman's breaches are hardy flowers.

Fringed lilies grow in Australia.

The trout lily replicates a masked replica.

This trillium is known as wake-robin.

Confederate violet of the United States.

Wood sorrel grows in deep shade.


Streetlights shine on
a globe that is dark.

A white winter is pearly.

Crazy hunter. Lost

smartest boys on earth

box auroras around
black tree in the bee

yard. Broken beads
and pillars, northern

light (hence the remote

beauty) and the dark
screen cracking light

spar. Long

before I left, I couldn't
get sunfish off my mind.

Test the mettle out of wood.
The white hat of wood

on the best battle
fields. Ferris wheels

perceive the sixth string.
Air on the G string.


An early flower of English woodlands.

The golden stars of the lesser celandine.

Lords and ladies is a woodland arum.

An iris from the cascade mountains.

Wild geranium grows in many habitats.

Yellow pond lilies adorn the lakes.

The trailing arbutus grows at the edges.

Azaleas are deciduous rhododendrons.

These beautiful orchids are fragrant.

Purple fringed orchis grows in Ohio.

Toothwort is a parasite on hazel.

Fireweed grows after woods are burnt.

The climbing nightshade is poisonous.

The jewelweed is an orange balsam.


Sparking in every pattern likens silver to episodes.
Quieter starlings outnumber the sandpaper one.

Breezes swear you put Ohio in my impromptu.
Our ceiling fan praised leaves, and praises.

Heterogeneous icons. City hymnology

Giving grease a ride, an added scent enriched.
Down anthracite. He was my lover’s maze.

Flora and fire went to Nevada to enjoy the laws.
Happiness increases as the population explodes.

If pubes be wool, wool wires bleat white.

Millions now living will never die. The calm could
be read once in a sitting and that sit was its allure.


That the Greeks chose not to name

tiny. Anaheim therein

involves woof. Equal pulses of breath

Frets upon the porky pine.

In my vicinity, survival intrigued

the curious. Salt in annals

Ending in stops. It is its own insult.

Take up thy Thucydides and walk.

A navy vying and an army vying.

I've held to the middle of a crooked tip.

Editor's Note: These poems have previously appeared in Circulation Flowers and Flags and Banners.

© 2008 Chuck Stebelton