well measured
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by JD DeHart



Reaching Now


I keep reaching down, but

Not for baby rabbit fur.


I keep reaching down into the creek

Flow, clouds of mud

Pluming up,


Careful not to catch myself

On the creature pinchers, the crawdads


My dad and I would wrap

Our fingers around. You catch them

Behind the claws.


That way, they can’t get you –

Which is probably good advice.

We put them in coffee cans with writhing



Ready to catch shimmering fish,

A stringer full.



a line, (a short blue one)



How Do You Measure Poetry?


by rhyme scheme,

            by trope?

by the way a line

            tacks onto a line?


            a child following



                                                                        by placement?


by pulse,

            the tapping of emotion,

            spilling out,

            well spring of the moment?


            remembered, captured,



or else

            at all?


why measure and subscribe

to the fickle nature


of opinion, flaming,

            juxtaposing, changing

            with time?


why place tape around

the edges of a reflection?



a line, (a short blue one)





Born in this universe,

born for this universe,


same world as you, dear

reader, but perhaps another range

of experiences,


my parents always told me

I was planned,


that there was a plan

for me.


I’ve gripped it as often as

I have been able.


a line, (a short blue one)

I Break


one moment at a time,

all the ties that wrap so




an aged gear decorated

with rust, shakes,


another moment, a fleck,

another twist, seconds later,


a sudden loosing, spinning now


wildly, a freed beast from a thousand-

year cage, bursting, loosing


freedom as the dial, all my doubts,

my tensions, turn with abandon.


I fly and yet remain on earth.




a line, (a short blue one)



Pencil Marks


I am (suddenly) the Pencil,

tracing a line.

What I will make, once

sharpened to a fine point?


A flickering screen tells me

I need to mix it up,

images of inspiring authors,

young and old.


  I want to try, even if it's difficult,

  even if it's rejected.


I need a new mix, worry it might

not come off exactly right, in the lines,

break the lines.


Working toward being a brave




a line, (a blue one)


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