Allan Peterson: Two Poems
Getting There From Here | Losing Oswego
Getting There From Here
She has planted pinks
and among them a stone turtle below the hose bib.
This is a new world
the driveway has divided into midnight and theater.
I have decided
none of this is cruelty, not evasions of the audience
of rain clouds,
not the faucet moaning without a ring washer,
but I am asking
what exists in her mind when concrete stands for life.
She says she is moving
outward with the planets and these settings help,
pinks spinning toward daylight,
the stone turtle staring skyward like an idiot.
I had called back the red roads to Syracuse,
but lost Oswego
somewhere near the lake with its lazy eye,
often silver but blind.
An epoch named for a metal, and anniversaries
whose lost owners
were buried with their forged swords.
Then riders on horseback,
a standing army, bronze bowls repouseÚd with cats.
Others appearing as their cruel gods
in their gold boats, punishing captives in luxury.
I remembered maps imperfectly,
wisteria, watersheds I magnified up from the small print.
The Romes, the Herkimers, the Compass Rose.
Allan Peterson's book, Anonymous Or, won the 2001 book competition by Defined Providence Press. His chapbooks include Stars On A Wire, and Small Charities. His poetry has recently found its way into print and online publications such as Arts & Letters (winner, 2002 Arts & Letters prize, selected by Judith Ortiz Cofer), Water-Stone, Shenandoah, Full Circle, Pierian Springs, Blaze and others, with work forthcoming in Gettysburg Review, Quarterly West, Emily Dickinson Anthology, and others. His awards include a Florida Arts Council Fellowship in Poetry and an NEA Fellowship in Poetry. This is his third publication in three candles.