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Corey Mesler  (email, website)


About the Poet:

Corey is a bookstore owner from Tennessee who has been widely published with both his poetry and prose.  His work has been published in Turnrow, Adirondack Review, American Poetry Journal,  Paumanok Review, Blood Orange, Yankee Pot Roast, Monday Night, Elimae, H_NGM_N, Center, Poet Lore, Forklift OH, Euphony, Rattle, Dicey Brown, Cordite, and others.  He has released two novels and several chapbooks.  See our books page for these titles, or click to his website above.



Workers Leaving the Lumiere Factory.


It was movement, that was the important thing.

How it must have seemed like magic.

No one, at the time, suspected that it would

be entertainment. How could they know?

Now, a century later, we are jaded,

our once static lives enlivened to the point

of restlessness, recklessness. We want

to see someone hit, someone tortured.

We want to see car wrecks so spectacular

they smash in our very souls. And if handed

a poemor a photographwe are apes.

Our hands barely grasp them. In our veins the

blood jumps and sizzles and pops. We

let the poem fall and run into the streets,

shouting revolution, shouting that we are free

from our chains, as the birds are free, as

the workers, now, are freed from their dull labors.



A Fairly Tale


Once upon a time

the whole world fell asleep

and dreamt of another

way of being; It was a long,

circuitous dream of re-

construction. We dreamt to

recreate the ways of men!

We dreamt to once

more visit all that is

best in us. A brave new world!

And the brave new world,

even in our unadulterated dream,

quickly returned to old and

tried ways, equivalent

amounts of love and murder,

sweetness and craven greed.

It happened again.

Again and again and, you

know, happily ever after.



I Only Want to Sing when All I do is Record


Perhaps I want it to do too much,

the poem. Perhaps

to desire a celebration of all human

interaction is a fools

foolishness. I want to tell you that

love, in all its forms,

is the one good thing. I want to say

that without saying it.

I can sense youre not listening, your

ear already attuned to

the song of the mockingbird, from

his bully pulpit, from his high wire.



Night Mind


Awoke at 2 a.m. with

only the dog for solace.

Stomach a roil, head

light, limbs weak.

The couch, the TV, the

pinpoint of Venus to

the East: none of these

things signified, mattered.

Now I listen to Son

House and try to gather

some scattered attention.

A message from an old

friend is kind. I gingerly

reply as if it is a butterfly.

By the time the sun comes

up I am drunk on solemn

aloneness. I will take

the pillow back. I will

attempt to climb back

into the now extinct night.

Something was lost to

me, something key.

I dont have the wits to try

and find it. Instead I

lie down in someone elses

warmth, a man nearly

like me, save he despairs

so easily at 2 a.m., and

he gives in to hating him-

self just a little for being

not well. Not well at all.