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Poetry Breakfast

Serving a little poetic nourishment every morning. Start your day with our new expanded menu. Poems, of course, are our specialty. But we will also be serving a fuller menu that includes poetry book reviews to feed poets' and poetry lovers' souls.

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Kevin Shyne

Logan’s Bath – A Poem by Kevin Shyne

Logan’s Bath

Logan, 14 months, stands beside his mother on her knees.
Swishing with her hand, she tests the water in the tub,
fiddles with the faucet and finds the perfect mix.
Leaning in, belly pressed to porcelain,
amazed by water gushing from the spout,
Logan slaps above the waterline in pure delight.
His perfect fingers break the silver skin,
dipping deeper in, he sees his submerged arms
refracted to the right.
He laughs and makes a fist
discovering that water can’t be squished
but it will bend the light

How little does he comprehend
of optical illusions
of volume that his hand displaces
of pipes and drains
of stains dissolved in aqueous solution
of rites of absolution
of faith in God’s reunion when we rise
of immersion in the meanings water comes to symbolize?

My daughter lifts him up and in.
He splashes, kicks, his eyes go wide.
He has no words to analyze or name
this wondrous stuff.
His laughter is enough.

Standing in the open door,
I watch and realize
I’d give the world to see the water gush
through Logan’s eyes.

 

About the Poet:  Kevin Shyne is a lifelong writer whose work once appeared frequently in corporate annual reports and employee newsletters. Turning to poetry in his retirement, Kevin has had poems published in Clementine Unbound, The Lyric, Poetry Porch and Blue Heron Review. Kevin lives in a small town in the corn-and-soybean heart of the Midwest, where, along with a group of fellow poets, he helped organize the first-ever poetry event for the Prairie Arts Council in Princeton, Illinois.

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

The Souvenir – A Poem by Kevin Shyne

The Souvenir

At Connemara Marble,
on tour in Ireland
you bought a rosary
handmade from polished stones
sea green, black veins
the quarry’s stock-in-trade
connected by a sturdy chain,
as if for hands too stiff
to finger through
more closely spaced decades.

In 30 years of marriage,
I’ve never seen you pray a rosary
looped about your hands
devoutly kissed
pressed palm to palm in prayer
your promises to God
sealed by a dangling crucifix.

I kept my peace, stood aside
observing as you paid,
a witness to your holy whim,
a souvenir to venerate
or something bought for buying’s sake
a bauble in disguise of piety
too lovely to resist.

On either score
some grace may come of it.
What else about your intercourse
with heaven have I missed?
What innocence in jeopardy
or weary refugee
do your secret prayers protect?

Later, in the ruins of an ancient church
I remember how to genuflect.

 

 

 

About the Poet:
Kevin Shyne is a lifelong writer whose work once filled the pages of corporate annual reports, but now appears in poetry journals including Clementine Unbound, Poetry Porch, Poetry Breakfast, The Avocet and The Lyric.

 

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Weekend Update – A Poem by Kevin Shyne

Weekend Update

Four single friends, three bedrooms
plus a sofa, first jobs out of college,
weekdays working late, weekends
pouring wine for someone else’s guest,
when parties didn’t start before 11,
when improv on TV was new,
when we were wild and crazy guys,
re-enacting skits we’d memorized.
Where the party went from there God only knew.

Laughter then was Cherry Coke
a sugar rush of comic bits
shaken, fizzing up
a running over cup of greatest hits.

Now in independent living
awaiting dinner served at four,
ancient boomers watch old episodes
of SNL, our laughter thickened into caramel
sea-salted with familiarity of comics
on the scene when we were young,
Weekend Update anchors half a century ago.
As if the party never stopped
I fill a glass of wine for someone new.
How she knows my name I couldn’t say
but she just made me laugh.
No one can make us stop
don’t even try.

That was how it felt to be alive
when we were younger than our fears.
That was how it felt to laugh, minus 50 years.

 

 

 

About the Poet:
Kevin Shyne is a lifelong writer whose work once filled the pages of corporate annual reports, but now appears in poetry journals including Clementine Unbound, Poetry Porch, Poetry Breakfast, The Avocet and The Lyric.

 

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Commuters – A Poem by Kevin Shyne

Commuters

The puppy sun
licks at my face
not letting me sleep.

I wake aboard
an inbound train
uncurling in my seat.

A man flips through
a file, his office formed
by knees and shirt.

His neighbor’s paper
crinkles, each page crying
“read me first!”

Pre-teens pose
in Hello Kitty clothes
as if in a mirror.

Twin earbud boys
sway with wires
dangling from their ears.

A romance novel
smoulders where
a lady marks her page.

The train conductor
twirls his punch,
sherrifing an Old West stage.

Early bird commuters
ride on tracks
within their minds.

Their dreams dissolve
at 6:03, derailed
at the end of the line.

 

 

About the Poet:
Kevin Shyne is a lifelong writer, whose work once appeared frequently in corporate annual reports, but now in his retirement, appears in poetry journals including Clementine Unbound, Poetry Porch, Poetry Breakfast and The Lyric.

 

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

Start your morning with a nourishing poem.  Follow us on  Twitter, Facebook, and  Tumblr,  and enjoy a new poem every morning straight to your feed.

Not on a Leash – A Poem by Kevin Shyne

Not on a Leash

Grief cannot be trained to sit and stay
or walk beside you on a leash.
When a door is left ajar, it dashes out
to lead you on a game of hide and seek.

Grief will not be groomed with comb or brush.
It sheds wherever fur is wanted least.
It’s always napping on your favorite chair
awakened when you try to take a seat.

Grief will not retrieve a far-flung stick
or give you back the toy between its teeth
but it will fetch forgotten days
and drop them at your feet.

Grief will stray but in the end
it scratches at your door, weary, worn and weak,
begging to be taken in, lifted up,
allowed to rest in peace.

Having hollowed out your heart,
grief settles in, curling up and drifting off to sleep.

 

 

About the Poet:
Kevin Shyne is a long-time writer and occasional poet. His poems have appeared recently in The Lyric and Clementine (Unbound).

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

 

Photo by Photo RaBe.

 

Before The Cleaners Come – A Poem by Kevin Shyne

Before The Cleaners Come

I clear the kitchen counters,
empty the dish-drying rack,
tuck sponge and brush below the sink,
hook broom behind the closet doors.
The kitchen, dining room and hall are mine,
as we agreed some time ago
dividing up domestic chores.
I check the other rooms
for anything of mine not put away.
The rest is yours.

The night before the cleaners come —
every other week lest housework
be a cause for us to disagree —
your rooms are spread
with cross-stitch patterns,
skeins of floss and pages torn
from magazines.
Your finished needlework,
rolled in paper towel tubes,
crowd the coffee table.
Tote bags hang from backs of chairs.
Scissors, tape and wrapping paper
lie where they have lain
since your niece’s baby shower.
CDs still wrapped in cellophane
mingle with the paperbacks
in need of bookshelf space.
They’ll have to wait. For every book
you read three others take its place.
Bulging shopping bags reveal
the contours of your latest purchase.
The sales receipts roost here and there
as if our house were visited by paper birds,
making nests on every horizontal surface.

Later on tonight,
I hear your pre-clean frenzy
while reading by myself in bed,
or getting up to offer unrequested help
with tasks you’re storming through.
I hold my tongue, never having found a way
to speak and not become the echo of your father.
Besides, no matter what I said
you wouldn’t start until the night before
turning something simple
if done in daily increments
into something furious.

Still I’m curious.
Could we avert the rush
before the cleaners come …
and still be us?

 

About the Poet:
Kevin Shyne is a long-time writer and occasional poet. His poems have appeared recently in The Lyric and Clementine (Unbound).

 

Poetry Breakfast accepts submissions of poetry and poetry related creative non-fiction year-round.  See our Submission Guidelines page for details on submitting your work.

 

Photo by PageFact.

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