Previous Feature: John Grey

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in the Columbia Review, Studio One, and Tau, with work upcoming in Examined Life Journal, Midwest Quarterly, and Naugatuck River Review.


A Winter Divide

A dim winter—
there are two existences at work here.
A dull thing come to life
in your company
and underpasses, alleys,
hard places to live.
Above us, frigid stars.
All around, deep snow banks.
But, with you beside me,
I can stroll a long way in the cold.

Meanwhile an old man
roams the margins
from left to right then right to left,
finally squats
where a highway overpass
becomes a nameless hotel.
God knows who lives there.
From the brightly lit river walk,
a gathering of homeless seem so gray.

The city is small and spotted white,
a minor winter postcard.
I’m thinking cold
but knowing love.
We huddle together.
They cluster apart.
How unflattering,
our pity.
How unrequited,
their shame.
How unevenly
we share the world.


The Problem with Progress

I can’t really compare
the new mini-mall
to the woods that
were here before—

maybe if I ranked
new shoes above butterflies
or considered Chinese takeout
superior to the scarlet tanager
in every conceivable way—

at least, the raccoons
will have a dumpster
to forage through—

but who asked
for their opinion?


All Hail! Midnight Lane Boutique is dedicated to the memory of Joe Dunn, actor, impresario, poet, publisher, and friend. Have a desultory New Year, everyone . . .


          We will meet again   

          one day, we will

          gather at the river

          (Paterson perchance)

                Robert Creeley 


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