David Spicer


this morning the sun smiled and I said hello
then I heard you’d departed nine decades gone
thousands of souls wistful as cities of orphans
I didn’t know you lived until I turned thirty
your words kidnapped me with truth and passion
held me a willing hostage forty years
I read your books and hundreds of your poems
when I was younger I didn’t unearth their nuances
any more than I grasped Buddha’s teachings
I met you at a reading a seer I loved said you
owned an ancient spirit’s eyes the color of sad joy
the centuries’ mysteries and pleasures married in them
you inscribed my battered copy of The Lice
your swift script beautiful as a schoolteacher’s
you gazed at me with eternal eyes of blue clarity
I was but a moment in your life
one that you forgot the second you flew
to the next room of strangers to sign their books
now that you have journeyed to a new world
and grief for the loss of your light lingers
this dying globe is darker

David Spicer lives in Memphis with his wife and Maine Coon. He tries, but does not always succeed, to walk the neighborhood every other day, where he has observed people climbing into windows, performing handstands on bicycles, whistling “Proud Mary” to babies in strollers, and other normal activities. He has poems in Santa Clara Review, Bookends Review, Reed Magazine, Synaeresis, Hamilton Stone Review, Alcatraz, Gargoyle, Third Wednesday, Ploughshares, American Poetry Review, and elsewhere. His latest chapbook is From the Limbs of a Pear Tree.