Dash, Peck, Scatter


Long-billed curlews, standing 
sentinel on spindly stalks,
poke their bills into grainy affair,
where sage perfumes, with a citrus twist,
the plaited hills slumping onto damp sand.

Blushing beneath the weighty 
cloudscape of early dusk, 
each tick of city light glistens 
over foam like an umbilical cord
binding us, complacent and smug.

We prick for any hidden gain
beneath the grains, 
scatter in fear of what lingers, 
search for what never appears.

The sun’s last breath tendrils 
across the sea, swooning our pilgrim steps,
and dashed pecks,
as the afternoon’s rays pass the day
onto the sickled moon,

and the only true lovers 
are the sun’s sweet kisses
along the horizon too far out to reach.

The Revelation Caught Inside Pluto’s Carnage


Planets dance in the blackness 
beyond the earth’s minute cares,
light spinning its tornado-twist,
ravaging the future 
of any complacent stride.

Perspective slices through,  
as shining star-tines, 
like cutting limelight,
disrupt our deluded design,

like some carnival rush,
a point we grab, 
holding tight to the wild path 
of shattering glass,
Pluto forcing the hand 
of those not cresting the wave. 

We brace the wall, 
steady each challenged step, 
dig deep to melt lead into gold, 
it’s all we can achieve—

to simmer the grief 
until it glows through the blows, 
thrusting out remnants 
of  life’s blistering woes.


Gail Grycel travels solo, geared for backpacking, with several pairs of dancing shoes. Her writing responds to the details of place—inner and outer landscape, and have been included in Vermont’s PoemCity, The Weekly Avocet, Anthology of Women’s Voices by These Fragile Lilacs Press, and Writers Cafe Magazine. When not on the road, she lives in a self-built straw bale home and works as a custom cabinetmaker and teacher of women. Without work boots on she can be found, in heels, at an Argentine Tango milonga.

Travel blog: https://gailstravel.weebly.com/

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