POEM: window bird

window bird

in the morning,
bold action!

in the afternoon,
quiet contemplation

in the nighttime,
deepest sadness

a sparrow sings knowingly
outside my window

/ / /

Jason Crane
17 October 2019
State College PA

POEM: Courtney’s laugh

Courtney’s laugh

drifts down
        from the floor
                above

like a shower
        of ginkgo leaves
                in an autumn breeze

/ / /

Jason Crane
15 October 2019
State College PA

POEM: Interrogation

Interrogation

The other day at my job —
wearing my corporate uniform,
the one with the logo on the left breast —
I helped, in a small but real way,
to send two boxes of syringes to
Guantanamo.
I felt sick to my stomach.
What would they be used for?
I imagined a hard-eyed CIA officer
injecting a syrupy liquid into the arm
of a gaunt man in an orange jumpsuit.
I saw the man’s Raggedy Andy head
loll back like his bones had turned
to jelly. The officer leaned in close
to ask those questions, those same
unanswerable questions,
for the thousandth time.
Sabotage was the first word
that came to mind, standing there
in my corporate uniform,
the one with the logo on the left breast.
Could I misdirect the boxes?
Throw them out? Lose them?
But the cameras are always watching
& my number is attached to everything
like a fingerprint. Plus I need the money.
So like a good company man
I sent the syringes to the island prison,
there to be used to protect my freedom
to keep working, to keep wearing my
corporate uniform, the one with the logo
on the left breast.

///

Jason Crane
4 October 2019
State College PA

POEM: a song for Shawn Porter

(AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu)

a song for Shawn Porter

it’s the jump
the scoop
the sharp hiss of the jab
the gleaming gold &
the sheen of sweat
it’s the inside dog fight
the outside dance
relentless forward motion
500 punches & the crowd
is chanting Por-ter! Por-ter!
round 11: massive uppercuts
just missing their targets
he takes one on the chin
hears the count
stays standing
shouts Let’s go!
now it’s the 12th
everything is leading
to this moment
3 minutes to decide
whose arm is raised &
who slips out under the ropes
Porter’s right hand is working
but it might be too late
the bell marks the distance
now we wait

///

Jason Crane
28 September 2019
State College PA

POEM: BOOM

BOOM

I’m in one of those relationships where
talking happens, but doesn’t need to
right now Owen is asleep on the couch upstairs
I’m in the basement futzing
Owen’s sleeping energy fills the whole house
it makes me feel safe, even though I can’t
see them or hear them or touch them
you know that thing where you can tell
there’s a TV on in the house even if
the sound is off? it’s like that
Owen is broadcasting a silent message
I’M HERE EVERYTHING IS OK
of course “everything” isn’t OK
but the thing about being in this pairing
is that even the things that aren’t OK
seem likely to be OK in the end
it’s been a long time since I’ve felt this way
how old was I when we got together?
42, I think. in which case I went 42 years
without ever feeling like everything
would work out … then boom, Owen.

/ / /

Jason Crane
15 September 2019
State College PA
but not for much longer