Monday, 8:08

BY tony Mancus

the living room has a rush
of furniture—a rash of wool and wood

you set down the tea cup
and all the moths circle

it's a dust-up, a canyon
of simple dotted flapping

my newspaper is only good
if you use it to wrap other things

in its putzy headlines
like: An Atom Mothered Your

Bible, or Brangeline Why
Can't You Be True?

Sort of contrary,
the song of the century

the way talking birds
can summon our tongues

while so few of us
bother to whistle.

Wednesday, 4:36

halve the sleep emotion
of weeds calved in the ocean

sway within the joint
and wood swell

as the words solidify
                                          you think
                                          your thinning
                             concerns can
be stuffed into a quarto—balled-up
and unquartered.

an echo wearing the stamp of sleepy motion:
have the color nearest
last night's conversation
on hand

& wall the towels
for our freshened up
morning faces.

all the earth
we know is surface.
one round drumming sound

halves the sleep you've gathered.
sewn in, each body
itches the dirt.


Tony Mancus is the author of a handful of chapbooks, most recently City Country (winner of the Seattle Review chapbook award). In 2008, he co-founded Flying Guillotine Press with Sommer Browning; they make small books. Also, with Meg Ronan he curates In Your Ear, a reading series in DC. He currently works as an instructional designer and lives with his wife Shannon and three yappy cats in Arlington, VA.