Paul Murdered a Spider

It was on the wall with a close up view
of a print of a surrealistic painting
by Rene Magritte.

He squished it on the glass
over a white dove of peace
in front of a face under a bowler.

Paul sprayed glass cleaner on a cloth
to wipe up the smear
from the glass.

After the murder, he wondered
that there were no spiders
in Renaissance art about the after life.

You would think Bosch placed spiders
in the Garden of Earthly Delights.
Especially in the right panel’s abyss.

copyright © 2022 Kenneth P. Gurney

Uneven Undoing

A slide manufactured
from sleeping pills
midsummers the faculties
and renders permission
impossible to be granted
for the ride downward
into a legitimate oblivion
and the intimacy
of a swiveling easy chair.

The television continues
to tell the story
of an infantry lieutenant
on the back nine
of a Gulf War battle
and an extraordinary
rendition of a snowball
located in hell.

Above the television
across the antlers
of a mounted elk head
a spider strings new silk
into daily temperature readings
in a Montana gas station
where the Coke machine
is so old it charges
a nickel for a green bottle.

copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney

Handicapped Entrance Escape

The horses open the barn door
and wander out into the corral.
Glory in the long, slanted morning light.

They amble to the post by the alder.
Dew damp cobwebs thread tree branches.
The struggle between spider and fly.

They frolic. No chickens underfoot.
Not for a while. Not until Paul
finishes milking two Ayrshire cows by hand.

The horses look for the blue button
by the gate, but find none.
The old rope loop as constant as ever.

Examining the stonewall,
they spot the last ice age markings and striations,
mosses and lichens far older than their kind.

Beneath the windmill, they arrive at the trough
full of cold well water and drink.
Runoff traverses terra cotta tiles to the cistern.


copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney