Greg Field


Clothes make the body,
her mother told her.
She saw clothes were full
of flesh. In the car,
after running through
the downpour, she tapped
dripping fingers on her
smartphone until the warranty
was useless. She remembered
her anticipation waiting
for him on the bottom stair.
She remembered the windshield
a waterfall, her clothes
pooling on the floor mat.
Her body shivered under what
clings. The ringing in her ears
dwindled like the rain to drizzle.
When he pulled her door open,
she looked down and saw
his soul had dissolved.
It shimmered like oil in his
water-filled shoes. His body
reflected his shrunken,
wrinkled shirt and pants.
She felt the ridges rise
on her fingertips.
She remembered she hadn’t
seen him come around
the car, open her door.
Her face now cloaked
in drizzle—she was jerked
out into the storm like
a newborn into air—
she was wet and alone.

Heaven’s Dog

The empty streets are wet with thunder,
with drops of another philosophy.
A ragged dog on the corner is finally empty.
He has given up dreams of meat and milk.
Behind him the chapel’s doors are locked.
His acute eyes can see the naked spirits
blinking through the broken glass.
Clouds and sun work together to bathe
the barren chapel’s steps in golden light.
A sparrow lands in this nimbus,
boldly snatches an insect from under
the dog’s stark belly and hops
into the shadow beneath heaven’s dog.

Premonition, 1964

          Good Friday Earthquake,
          Anchorage, Alaska

We played on ice bergs,
leaped from one blue giant
to another as they bobbed
and dipped in gray water.
I called out to my friend
how unsteady the blue world
was beneath the leaden sky.

I saw houses shift
and tumble into the bay
where blue ice bergs,
house-sized sat stranded
by the receding tide
in the rolling mud.

I learned my friend fell
through his funneled floor,
his house collapsed
onto his curled form.
I saw his rooftop
submerged in clay.
Blue ice bergs advanced
in the shifting bay.

GregGreg Field is an artist, writer, and musician. His books are The End of This Set, a chapbook (BkMk Press), The Longest Breath (Mid-America Press), and Black Heart (Mammoth Press). His most recent book is Uncertainties (Woodley Press). He plays drums for the improvisational jazz band, River Cow Orchestra. His paintings are in private collections all over the country. His poems have appeared in New Letters, Chiron Review, Laurel Review, Chouteau Review and other journals. He is one of the editors of the I-70 Review. He lives in Independence, Missouri with his wife, poet, Maryfrances Wagner and their dog, Sylvia Plath.