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Ray Succre  (email) Coos Bay, Oregon


About the Poet:

Ray Succre currently lives on the southern Oregon coast with his wife and son.  He has been published in Aesthetica, BlazeVOX, and Pank, as well as in numerous others across as many countries.  His novel Tatterdemalion (Cauliay Publishing) was recently released in print and is available most places.  He tries hard.  For inquiry, publication history, and information, visit him online: http://raysuccre.blogspot.com


January, 2009

You are Cordially Invited

The hours in preparation were a short affair;

there had been months of thought, days of collection

and invitation.


Todd Hargens had won Best Cook in January.

Maria Kesper had been twice nominated a State Hostess.


Janet believes it is her turn, and her party will be both

lavish and personable.  It is a warm house, fragrant

with extravagant meal and perfumed doorways


She has bettered herself, caught a spark of newness

from old haystacks, and she has worked rigidly

for the creation of her one-chance night.


Each daystart, her cooking is stronger than Todd's,

and at each end, more informed than Maria's.

Janet is disabled from pride, however.  A Malfunction.

She must gather her self from others, is eager for it.


With settings drawn out and the coordinated music

pleasant in the cozy home, with the friendly scent

of a detailed, summery dinner, she paces

near the windows, near the music, panting

in imagination, a love loving to cook, spark loving

her contemporaries, as she waits out each moment

for guests who never come.

Heavier than Air

Leaward or in shade have I slept the nights,

closer by each, to a dim and grand dream,

eyes latched shut and sent down passages

more subtle than shapeless grades of fog.


If I tamper myself thin

and steadily shit away my wiles,

a peeled lime of panic aired as an art,

but wobbling, fearful,

I waste ballast, I tip and dab my nose

into that froth that tops the surf

I hoped, as a boy, to glide over.


I no longer glide;


I have flapped my arms busted and bony,

pure, pure, you see, sinking and pure.


Leaward I rest, in shade or divorced by each

previous minute.  I will glide again tomorrow.

I'm there and I'm here, and sleep yesterday

was short; tonight's sleep will be short.


Look now, I am not gone long, or here long,

if you do not look.

Self-Portrait of a Goat


This is a man who knows he is soon

old.  His hair has no lasting pigment.

The semilunar line of brow has been

dissevered in the center, a torn letter,

by that scythe of a nose.


His face has grown round,

drawn from the fats of sunlight and

the touches of time's hands who

are people.


He shows two faces within a one,

and in the left face there is

emotionless monotony.

The left is figurative.

In the opposing face, there is a

weeded and cavitous sadness. 

It has no form.  It is only there,

presenting itself.


Could this man have playwrighted

the nervousness of animal living,

having ascertained so abstractly his own?


They fear he will forget them, those eyes,

he is trying to see through time

but the eyes, they will not leave him.