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Paul Ilechko "The Thickness of Bamboo"

The Thickness of Bamboo


Bamboo sucks the warmth

       from out of the air     


as if a thousand years flashed past

       in that instant of transition     


a thousand years of ghosts in lace

       who haunt the gravel paths

       and overgrown thickets

       beside the water     ghosts still

              in their Sunday best     


euphoric in their piety     beside the darkness

       of the church     the blackened

       wood and faded leather     binding

       pages of ivory madness     


lit by the glimmering

       edges of red and blue


that shadowcast from stained glass     

       and reflect from empty eyes    


as the bells begin their evening song     

       and the water sits silent and black     

       on a night with no moon.

Bio: Paul Ilechko is the author of the chapbooks “Bartok in Winter” (Flutter Press) and “Graph of Life” (Finishing Line Press). His work has appeared in a variety of journals, including Juxtaprose, Rogue Agent, Cathexis Northwest Press, Thin Air Magazine and Pithead Chapel. He lives with his partner in Lambertville, NJ.

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