Two Poems

July 5, 2019



Ghost Hums as They Think of Love


I’ve swallowed it like songs in church

we pulled from the air,

stones willed into meaning


or words molted from some cold thing

fragile as beauty,

the fold between shoulder blades.


In the end the empty

is the hard part,


what to do with the shells

left under the trees. How


we can be so willing,

that we’ll unfold a pair of wings

break all the little bones


and hope

the wind will catch them,

with its still hands.




Morphology 1


winter is not a mouth

            asking of you, endless


when I touch you

            in my sleep you put your hand


on my chest and find feathers

            red and warm beige


            a cardinal once flew

into my bedroom window


I couldn’t bring myself to crush its neck

           before the cat could get there


            so where does mercy fall

among our words of love


sometimes ice forms around fruit

          that empties as alcohol and sugar


          even still water

will change its shape in time


the buds will form all the same

            pink and nascent


            this gift I give you, permission







Conor Scruton lives in Milwaukee, where they research ghost stories and are a poetry editor for cream city review. Their work has appeared in North American Review, CutBank, Salamander, and other journals.

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