Along with our postcards, Red Flag releases one poem a month to your digital mailbox. On this page you will find all of our past Poetry Express poems along with information about their authors. The Poetry Express email format allows us more freedom to publish work that would not necessarily fit on a postcard. If you like these poems and want to read the upcoming ones before anyone else, or if a poetic email sounds much better than the spam mail you sort through everyday, head on over to our subscribe page. All Red Flag postcard subscribers are automatically added to the Poetry Express mailing list as a benefit of their subscription.
The stamp is a sepia-toned lighthouse
on one of the lesser great lakes
somewhere past upper peninsula’s
Most Photographed Falls.
The postcard’s from a stranger whose driveway I turned around in
once I stopped pretending to know where I was. About to pull
back on the Byway, and her quick face appeared between
blinds, her quick hopeful face asking who has come and why.
Maybe you can relate to this. Maybe in third grade
you picked another kid’s juicebox off the sill
drank from it, and everyone saw.
Maybe it was a new flavor you’d never even heard of.
Or the same flavor, and you had to know
if everyone’s tasted the same.
Maybe winds are scudding leaves across
the crusty exoskeleton of snow outside your window.
I thought by now I’d have something more,
climbed up the statue of liberty’s skirt
or crushed a wasp’s nest with my bare hands.
Instead, I was running through the woods with a friend
who may not exist, she said something
that made me laugh, and I got a spider web in my mouth.
And when we got back to the campsite
the adults were folding up the tarps and packing the car.
Daniel Hales is the author of the chapbook Tempo Maps, and composer of the companion CD, Miner Street Symphony (ixnay press). He also has two more chapbooks being published in the coming months. His band, The Frost Heaves, recently released an album titled "Contrariwise: Songs from Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass." A small, intangible part of him lives at: www.danielhales.com.
All Rights revert to author one year after initial publication.