from LeafMold

By F. Daniel Rzicznek


Faith in money: how a face in a mirror erases itself with the
end result of a deep breath. Listen: I am a magpie
perfecting a cellphone. Listen again: a drunken doubt, a
certainty of rising in the thick blue preceding dawn, the wet
odor of trees, the frenetic clamor of birds and more birds.
For all minnows know, we are gods wading into their
kingdoms performing redundant, primal acts. I wrote
something with my breath before sleep and promised to
remember; the only scrap left upon waking was the word
salt. Some rivers, you know, run north. Some answers
never exist. Illogical to call you mine, just as it would be to
call a river water. The whole day was one huge cloud—and
at its end, rain. I am to go onward from here but it is dark.
My eyes adjust: a hill, a house, a mob of pines pushed by
wind. A sickness when yellow petals emerge, a sickness in
the darkness where pages are bound together—every year a
sickness, and yet joy.


F. Daniel Rzicznek is the author of two poetry collections, Divination Machine (Free Verse Editions/Parlor Press) and Neck of the World (Utah State), as well as four chapbooks: Live Feeds (Epiphany Editions), Nag Champa in the Rain (Orange Monkey Publishing), Vine River Hermitage (Cooper Dillon Books), and Cloud Tablets (Kent State). He is coeditor of The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Prose Poetry: Contemporary Poets in Discussion and Practice (Rose Metal Press). His recent poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Beloit Poetry Journal, Volt, Kenyon Review, Massachusetts Review, Bombay Gin, and elsewhere. Rzicznek teaches writing at Bowling Green State University in Ohio.