Thursday 3 February 2022

Five Superb Poems by RC deWinter



the treachery of mirrors


when the mirror began talking back

in the voice of the wind

each time i stood gazing at the ruin of my face

i turned it to the wall

all i heard was the music of time

whistling through the empty spaces of my life

as it flattened every flower struggling to bloom

in the sand of heartache

but there’s no hiding from the mirror of the soul

spitting the lava of truth

from the molten bedrock of what is

and cannot be changed

so i pray for the redemption of hope

that fragile flame wavering

in some small sheltered pocket

buried in my dreams



after the battle


i wake up
hung over my eyes
crusted with
dreams vague and disconnected
tongue furred with regret

the bed a
battlefield strewn with
the crumbs of
i remember and want to
forget soaked in the

kiss of gin
slowly untangling
myself from
the bedclothes
disarranged by armies of
heartbreak and desire

i rise as
i reassemble
myself best
i can to
get on with the business of
living leaving the

bed unmade
so all the carnage
will dry in
the hot sun
streaming in as though it were
a beautiful day



agent provocateur

you can stop
dancing now i see
you putting
your best foot
forward trying to impress
me with whatever

it is you
think i want to see
a tired mix
of clichés
and the unspectacular
legerdemain of

a man who
isn’t quite sure of
who he is
and i know
damn well you’ve got no clue of
who i am you’ve dressed

me in the
smoke of wishes and
all your dreams
that never
came true but even though i’m
not interested

i’ll be kind
for i know who and
what i am
the agent
provocateur of many
lonely wishful hearts



9 Lines for June 9


I spent the day trying to bury the dead

But the weather was fine

And they lounged in the back yard all afternoon


Sipping margaritas and laughing at my feeble attempts

With the shovel and spade until soaked with sweat

I surrendered


Threw down that useless tool

Mixed myself a drink

And toasted their immortality



moving day


there’s nothing delicious left

in my amusement park of a life

each door i open reveals nothing but clutter

all that glitters is tin

the shoes are mismatched

and the silk of that glamorous shawl

is pocked with holes

thanks to the moths that feasted on it

that charming man i found in a perfectly

respectable ordinary lies under my bed

just beyond reach singing drunken snatches

of off colour sea chanties so i can’t drag him

out the door and be done with him and

even if i could it would just be more fodder

for nosy old neighbours with nothing better

to do than gossip

perhaps this is the perfect time

to pack up the car and go

anywhere would be better than here

and though the car is questionable – it is

30 years old after all – it has a trunk

large enough to hold four bodies good tires

and an air conditioner  that won’t quit

and let’s face it – i don’t have much to pack

who needs junk jewellery tatty shawls

and a drunk when the whole world is waiting

i’ll stuff the trunk full of books and clothes

plug the phone into the lighter – gotta have gps! –

and the computer can ride on the floor in the back

as long as the social security checks keep coming

and the car holds out i can drive until i find

a new neighbourhood  to entertain

RC deWinter’s poetry is widely anthologized, notably in "New York City Haiku" (NY Times, 2/2017), Sentient Souls – Lothlorien Poetry Journal Volume 4 (10/2021),"easing the edges:  a collection of everyday miracles" (Patrick Heath Public Library of Boerne , 11/2021), "The Connecticut Shakespeare Festival Anthology" (River Bend Bookshop Press, 12/2021) in print: 2River, Event, Gargoyle Magazine, the minnesota review, Night Picnic Journal, Plainsongs, Prairie Schooner, Southword, The Ogham Stone, Twelve Mile Review, York Literary Review among many others and appears in numerous online literary journals.  

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