Gilham Park


The streetlight bathes its tree in sepia.

The bats quiver as trails of shade.


Two overweight women pump their legs

into a jigsaw puzzle of body and swing-


set. His hair is full of branches one says,

and the other lodges a twig in her mouth.


He dangles his feet from the concrete ledge

of the drained swimming pool. There are years


between them shaped like shaking

jungle gyms. The June bugs fly in Mobius


strips. Passing cars shrink in controlled rage.

If a bat stops flying, it is likely to die


as a god, between whose toes the blades

of grass feel so cold. Almost a tickle.


Brian Clifton lives in Kansas City, Missouri. He enjoys walking and making pancakes. His work can be found in burntdistrict, Iodine, The Dirty Napkin, Juked, and Meat for Tea.