White Hot, Cool Blue

Looking down from space
on southwest highways
through the lens of infrared
cameras the hottest asphalt
is white hot
bordered with reds and yellows
barely moving intertwined bodies
pounding sand show everything
except citizenship
all silhouetted clear white
fallen branches appear
cool blue on the perimeter
tulips and roses bloom
forever and the dead
sycamores are bluer
in death than ever in life



My Stars

after i was shown the pointer stars
i never lost north again
enthralled by cold galaxies
I knew the only
sensations they offered came from
a scorpion’s sting, a bear’s claw
or an up-turned dipper of dark matter
until finally at three-score and ten
i finally saw the truth
of my own star jasmine
here in Tucson swirling up
a few four-by-fours to my warped
ramada strewing their white design
and perfume in abandon
turning clockwise as
some jasmine helix i visit
nightly beneath a full moon
thrusting my face into their wonder
of green and white I merge and climb
with them higher and higher until
finally I look down from the seven sisters
down past tree tops and roofs
to my yard and my own constellation
called the sweet jasmine cluster
visit me unannounced and I shall
take you to a place your senses
will never forget the hot and rich
steaming soil from which
the roots draw life and color




[Burgess Needle’s second collection of poetry, THAI COMIC BOOKS: poems from my life in Thailand with the Peace Corps: 1967-1969, was published by Big Table Publishing in 2013. More information may be found at:  www.burgessneedle.com. His poems have appeared in Decanto, Nutshell, Under the Radar and Of Zoos. His fiction has most recently appeared in Connotation Press.]

Copyright © 2013 by Burgess Needle, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.