Thursday, December 1, 2016

The Room Of Mediation by Michael Brownstein


I no longer can tolerate this repetition of speech as if
As if
You only visit the stone room.
The stone room?
The whisky spit, the beer gallows, the wine cells, vodka vodka,
The noisy space of drunks
Crushing the night with loudness and crow caws,
Off-colored perfume breath,
Off-colored odors of body 
Too much of all things.
Son, "oh" is not enough.
"Oh" is all I have.
The stone room is only one room from the bone board
And the bone board is too close to the sea.
You cannot swim. I have seen men drown is the flesh of air,
Blood from carcasses and corpses,
Broken glass and shards of shell.


Michael H. Brownstein has been widely published throughout the small and literary presses. His work has appeared in The Café Review, American Letters and Commentary, Skidrow Penthouse, Xavier Review, Hotel Amerika, Free Lunch, Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, The Pacific Review, and others. In addition, he has nine poetry chapbooks including The Shooting Gallery (Samidat Press, 1987), Poems from the Body Bag (Ommation Press, 1988), A Period of Trees (Snark Press, 2004), What Stone Is (Fractal Edge Press, 2005), I Was a Teacher Once (Ten Page Press, 2011), Firestorm: A Rendering of Torah (Camel Saloon Press, 2012), and The Katy Trail, Mid-Missouri, 100F Outside And Other Poems (Kind of Hurricane Press, 2013). He is the editor of First Poems from Viet Nam (2011) and head administrator of Project Agent Orange (

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