National Poetry Month Day 11: “Billy Divine” by Adam McGovern


Billy Divine

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The American Primeval
is not the green garden we think we’ve lost
it’s stark white cloudless sky
above a cinder-gray shack
where the black pillar of a thrice-widowed prairie woman stands
beside a pale boy more small against it
a few bare timbers
knocked together
to hold in some darkness and peace
Older, he cracks wood against stitched leather
to hear himself echo in cheering crowds
Finds Jesus at the top of his game
and follows him down a different road
Wood tabernacles, triumphal arcs
to be reduced to timbers when he leaves town again
furs and fine furnishings will fill up the dark spaces
in the rooms he walks through now
Tintype phantoms fade
and flake
like cinders
borne up into a cloudless sky

-Adam McGovern

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Adam McGovern contributes criticism to the mass-agora and has posted webcomics there and at the online arts salon Trip City. He has published poetry with Long Shot and ArtPride New Jersey, written lyrics for the meta-hick band The Tall Pines and written poems included as verse in comics from GG Studio and puzzle-screens for Black Hammer videogames. It’s a living-of-the-mind.

Original poetry published by The Rumpus. More from this author →