07 Nov

Poetry – 2 Poems by Jess Falkenhagen (pt 2)

Innocence Lost- part 1

the day
back in the back yard night
you told me things at the small yellow table

perversely proud of the near complete annihilation

reality was a tarp that up and billowed away

as your mouth cowboy kicked out these bewildering words
I felt the wind hit
out of nowhere
and reality – what one knows to be true-
flew away
all the way down the mountain and then out to sea
and what was left was distortion
which feels like madness to those who are weavers

Acre upon acre of pain
field upon field of grief

coherence lay down and died
certainty evaporated
time was a vast angry fog and lost all meaning
sleep became staring in the dark
waiting for daybreak
to a day already broken


a pony party

The final child is turning 6.
It is a pony party.
Up on the ridge, the mother leads the horse through the waist-high clumps of sage.
While, at that very moment,
he has his hand on the trigger.
His finger hovers over the detonator,
a maniacal gleam,
not only self immolation,
he is going to take them all down with him.
And the children will be forced to drag their lost limbs into adulthood with them.

But the pony walks steadily and the cake is frosted.
The mother swallows the knife.
The children continue,
blissfully unaware, which is, of course,
all that matters.


Jess Falkenhagen

Jess Falkenhagen lives with her husband and 4 children in an old adobe house at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in Northern New Mexico. She has a background in Cultural Anthropology and reads an enormous quantity of memoir, travel literature, ethnography and poetry. She has been to 41 countries and has been proudly social media free since 1973.