Issue Nine, Poetry

Three poems by Art Harrison

Candles
(A memory)

Stumble into a dark apartment
And fumble for the light.
Empty and cool with the breeze
Blowing through the open window.
Flick the switch and gaze around
At the mess of dishes, scattered papers,
And children’s toys.
The kids are back with their mother for the week
And the place is quiet and dead without their light.
The light on the answering machine blinks three times;
Someone has actually called,
Three someones possibly.
Savour the chance to break this awful silence.
Two from the children.
So often the ones who keep me in contact with the world…
And one from her.
After months of nothing her voice comes to me like the whispers of a ghost
Calling from the other side.
She sounds tired.
She’s been working so hard and before I can catch myself
I wish I could hold her.
But I remember where I am
And what has happened
Replay the message to catch the content, which says very little,
Give my head a shake and go to erase just as the power goes out.
Light candles.
Sit in the glow holding myself and try
Try so hard not to think of her.
Try to forget the pounding of my heart.
Light candles.
Watch them burn long into the night.

Nella Citta´(In the City)
In the Garden

About the Author

Art Harrison was born and raised in the Kootenays and attended Selkirk College in the mid-nineteen-nineties, and again, virtually, in 2020. He also had a brief stint at UBC, before working in the Human Services field for over 20 years. He has been a staff reporter/photographer for the Trail Times, had a number of articles published in the regional magazine, Route-3, and has had poetry published in the Blue Mountain Review, and The Okanagan University College Journal – Chiaroscuro. Harrison is the father of two daughters, Kim and Karli, and two step-daughters, Astrid and Melinda. He currently continues to reside in the Kootenays with his wife, Susanne, a watercolorist.

Watercolors by Susanne Harrison and photograph of Via dell’Indipendenza, Bologna, Italy, by Art Harrison