Manny Blacksher

Crepuscule June evening chirps in the breath betweenafternoon and old avian night.New moon swims the city duck pond. Street lightsburr cicada-like. Taxies swoop, careenscreeching the gusted lanes – loosed parakeets.Grubbing hours overtime, a roughneckwoodpecker goes nattering through rickrackmacadam, jacked in. Above the streeta lineman’s perched. He cocks a liquid eyeat distant crashes, cries – held not serenebut still as night grows dim. On paths that liealong the plum wine pond, the groundsman’s caneis pronged. He dips and spears the trash unseen,stalks on, relentless as the river crane. Finding the Cat Cubist calligraph in lampblack, the room’sa zero plashed abruptly by some master’scareless hand. His brush strokes’ pranking whiskersfray door frames, matte the shadows you presumeare headlights nosing through the bamboo blinds.Sleepless early morning, you cannot holdthe pillow, and your shoes are empty. Coldcomfort creeps beneath the bed. Pay no mind, but dream a thousand cat-faced demons wauling murder, till your clock’s knocked off the vanity – a thunder crash – and wake. This is fallingon your feet. Get up. Remember to keepthe box clean and bowl full. Hungry,you eat. Sleepy, you go back to sleep. Manny Blacksher is a teacher, writer, and editor who will soon enroll in Carnegie Mellon's masters program in professional writing. Blacksher grew up in Alabama but has lived and worked in Montreal and Dublin, Ireland. His poems have appeared in many journals including Poetry Ireland Review, Measure, Green Hills Literary Lantern, and Digital Americana.