April 11, 2012 / Creative Writing
In “Sequence,” J. D. Smith offers a startling contrast of nightmarish images—an animal lured for an empty sacrifice and a watery attempt to escape from one’s self.
May 29, 2013
God be thanked for the incense of your prayers
and may our risen Lord soon show his countenance.
I send this boon of twenty shillings hence
as penance, an outward token of good will.
One can only wonder what those monks
of Mount Grace Priory said, passing around
the choicest of that Lent’s bequests to gloss
from brethren voices each audacious word:
But one condition governs this day’s kindness,
though I hope not tapers ardent blessings:
by no means whatsoever shall your house
lay claim to a somewhat musty book strayed
from your possession (this I shall confess)
called Florarium Bartholomei.
Shrewd naturalist, not impious. I guess
he’d come to covet its rubricated vellum.
I wish all Carthusian brothers holy peace,
that with unceasing waves of praying, songs,
and fasts, you might bend the ear of heaven
to a shriven Yorkshireman, be he right or wrong.
Brett Foster is the author of two poetry collections, The Garbage Eater (2011) and the recently released Fall Run Road, which was awarded Finishing Line Press’s Open Chapbook Prize. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Books and Culture, Cellpoems, Image, Kenyon Review, New Criterion, Pleiades, Poetry Daily, Shenandoah, Southwest Review, Subtropics, and Yale Review.