Keith Newton Poems

 

 

 

False Gods

 

The spent night of its images.
On the bright stage the head of a beast.
The beams of the lighthouse
roved on the bay, the fog
off the water spun its felted insects
into the steel-fed mouths
of the strings. The hammers
of their eyes pivoted, their heads rose
to fly into the lights.
Only the black assembly corroding
in the heat overhead
fueled the excavation
of my sight. Music, listen:
I was born without the hands of my eyes.
I hollowed the bright stage
out of the nightwatch:
owls perched on the cliffs
overhanging the sea,
blankets of goat hair
and cedar hung in the earth lodge
to dry, dark sycamores rose
from the grains of footage
projected on a wall
in a lead room, and flute-girls
paraded in the street. Listen:
the stage was as strange
as a beast, as serene as a beast
under guard, commanded.

 

 

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Keith Newton’s poems and essays have appeared in Harvard Review, Typo, and Octopus, among other journals, and his chapbook Sent Forth to Die in a Happy City was published this year by Cannibal Books. He lives in Brooklyn, where he edits the online magazine Harp & Altar.

 

 

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