the moon is a good speller

the moon is a good speller
taboo some night to some people
taboo probably to some animals
only to befriend both categories
only to move shadow from one sphere of time to the next
only to make a loan to the forest to the unseen eyes asleep
   or participating in the loan by waking

just in time the sky closes
just in time a boy with roses calculates one breath of no one
reaching nowhere

No, No, Neruda

Think the stone
I'm throwing might
take my life, if
it comes back on
me I'm dead.
Not as a hopeless
child playing poorly
in a bean field
with a forest for
a boundary - no

no, Neruda - I'm dead
as an adult who stoned
himself to emphatic
death by choosing to
stone another, and
another, and another.

Box Dream (Part of Nothing)

The dream might as well have said
Put your dreams in a box,
odd space a woman brought with a
drawing and a simple book
as if, was as if she had an answer
she would call it
oh what was it but some dreary
dark baton
oh what a space the woods can be
oh what a place to save a branch
or two or three
and know only to yourself the box
you're in, dream-wary, like some old
supposed neighbor friend warned
as you privately dismissed him.

Michael Burkard's lucky coat anywhere is available from Nightboat Books. He's self-published three books of drawing/writing, available from