Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Robert L. Jackson III - Five Poems

Aethereal Gap

I draw the ghosts from the earth
and the brittle bricks still holding
lodged projectiles from distant cannon.
Their swords become solid only at night,
when the cemetery gates are closed.
Only when the light no longer reflects
have they frozen and revealed geometric perfection.
Only water that has frozen
can bear any shape.
Although I had opened the iron latch
their metaphysical beauty
caused eyes to evolve to a fertile green
and brought my flesh to flatten
against the hard ground
of a gaped wood floor,
assembled by buried bones and dust,
yet aethereally more complete
than the modern tile filled with polymer sealant.
I am swimming in the aether
without armor, and without a shield
but with no gap
between what is untouchable
in the broad day light.

Arbor on Arc

On all global surfaces
the statically flailing limbs
always grow toward the light
and the roots
always grow into the dark
core of the Earth.
The mirrored green trees
grow apart
and away from the Earth's center.
Their roots are the closest
but still distant.
Some branches
seek to strangle the sky,
while some droop
in return,
and others float
parallel to the ground.
Except for their trunks
they follow no artificial law
but are punished
by the pruning
around power lines,
unlike the strict hedges
aligning the road.

Roman Glass Necklace

Before the bond
was formed in rings
and before the empire
was broken,
the glass was melted from sand
and formed
into a useful object,
now unknown.
The man-made smoothness
perhaps in war
but probably by accident,
and was left for garbage.
The centuries came and went.
Men settled and cultivated.
Tank treads transformed
the desert
into a modern eden
of white skyscrapers
flowing from the earth
and farming villages
housing bees with new honey.
I followed the tracks
and bought a set piece.
In a civilized city
of the new world
it was stolen years ago,
and now the necklace is replaced.
with more remnants
of a time
more similar to our own
than we admit.

Eclipse 7/22/09

The sun
tried to darken
and return
to my natural state
on the other side.
The moon’s shadow
fit perfectly
over the sun’s bulb
as if designed
for this moment.
The light, though dimmed,
still burned
my blue eyes.
Sometimes white clouds
would filter it enough
to reveal the sharp crescent.
Barbarically pierced,
a thin sheet
also projected
the image on the ground
and others saw
and defaced their newspapers
to see the spectacle
without damage or language.

Blinding Blizzard

The cotton bloomed
on brittle brown stalks,
still standing, waiting for a late harvest.
The pale fog materialized,
too thick for us to see
the concrete bridge and migrating island.
From morning to dawn
the dense humidity would not relent,
blurring the horizon and the coast.
After the pummeling of hurricanes
over geological history,
the tides and currents
still deposited the white pure quartz.
The wind broke the fog
to rape our eyes with abrasive
and pile the broken crystals
along ridges, corners and features.
The pixels reported
of a white storm
able to stop mechanical man,
destroying our precision schedules
until melting into life.
Colorless glowing satin draped itself
over flesh now promised.
Despite the cover,
white is not an effective
as it contrasts all colors
and flows past the smooth curves
while accentuating
the imperfections.

Robert grew up in Clearwater, on the Florida coast, but is now landlocked in Auburn, Alabama. His memories and trips back are often catalysts for many of his poems. His research in science and engineering also intertwine themselves into some of his poems. Robert Jackson’s work has appeared in several print and online literary journals. He has a poorly maintained website athttp://www.eng.auburn.edu/~jacksr7/. Robert is currently a professor in Mechanical Engineering at Auburn University.

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