Lodestar Quarterly

Lodestar Quarterly
Figure reaching for a star Issue 19 • Fall 2006 • Poetry

From Reticent's Gazebo

Kevin McLellan

"Red, a subjective substance in an objective shell..."
-- Kandinsky


A cat -- under the brush -- listens
to a Cardinal -- against a lush
landscape -- slurring a sobering scat.

I do not want to be red.


A string of drool elongates
from the bull's muzzle as his
front right hoof repeatedly stamps

the ground. Nearsighted --
and from the other side
of the fence -- does he see

my eyes like photographed ones
glowing red? Or does he see these veins
threading my now-skittish eyes?


Photo: in a she-she hush-hush
gay-friendly hotel, my lover poses for me
on New Years Eve in Lyon

flash reddens-out his eyes
as he stops making our post-lovemaking
and temporary bed the first day of...

I can't remember the year. I can't remember
his friend's name -- the one
who took a head shot of us -- either:

fired-up clouds inhibit the flash
blacken out our faces
except for my right eye glowing red.


The Boogie Man's more frightening
to a child whose parents say "you cannot
because you might get hurt"

and the phrases debilitating recklessness
and reckless debilitation
will be a reality for this child

as a grown-up who'll attract danger
and recognize it as romance
like a kerosene lamp in a hay barn.


A pansy seed left the gazebo
for lawn
and it allows rain...

No, not allows. Allows implies control.

A red flower -- a pansy
amongst blades
of grass -- is trampled by the man.

Kevin McLellan, MFA graduate in writing from Vermont College, has recent or forthcoming poems in journals including: Exquisite Corpse, Poetry Midwest, Wilderness House Literary Review, Paper Street Press, and Stylus Poetry Journal. Kevin instructs poetry workshops at the Cambridge Center for Adult Education.

Go To: Issue 19 or Lodestar Quarterly home page