Poems

RYO YAMAGUCHI Thin Continuance

Came by and
+++++ifelt
for you, in the pocket

+++++i+++++iwhere
the small thing we said
had turned,

the small quotation,
+++++i+++++iby
+++++ia river or

streetcar, I think
+++++i+++++iwe
+++++iwere just talking,

like people talk, no
real thrust,
+++++i+++++ithe meal,

+++++ior what we
thought
+++++iof the lake, the neighborhood,

+++++ibut this isn’t
+++++ibutthisit
anymore, it isn’t the

heading, or a letter or
a thing
+++++i+++++iinitialed,

it isn’t this
enclosure
anymore,

+++++iI felt
the echo,
+++++ia small disturbance

+++++i+++++iof pressure,
+++++ihere it is like a song
we knew,

a collection of songs
hummed
+++++ithrough,

gone
but also having
+++++i+++++i+++left,

eventually it is
+++++ian hour
superimposed

+++++ion the year,
longer even, as long
as we can look

+++++i+++++iback,
in the same
+++++i+++++ihour,

back,
until the detail
+++++iis poor,

until
it is just light
+++++icompletely burned in,

+++++i+++++iand we
never were, as if
it could be

+++++ilike that, as if
the looking back, our
turning and looking

back, in that
we had an end,+exercise,
we had an end,

we had an eand
then
we hadalook,

you & I,
all of a sudden,
+++++ihaving
never been,

we hadabut
in this
we hadapoem,

this
we hadaone.

Ryo Yamaguchi is the author of The Refusal of Suitors, published by Noemi Press. His poetry has appeared in journals such as Denver QuarterlyGulf Coast, and Bennington Review, and his book reviews and other critical writings can be found in outlets such as the Kenyon ReviewBoston Review, and Michigan Quarterly Review. He lives in Seattle where he works at Wave Books. Please visit him at plotsandoaths.com.