Poems by Joseph R. Moore

The Parlor

the waiter drops off another beer and
I’m thinking paseos and limes
gimme        some        of that 
our sour resolve imprisoned in empty bottles
hidden among the fairy tale floorboards
that disguise 
raw sewage and city pipelines

twirling our thumbs every which way
figure skaters in retrograde motion
I’m looking into memory 
pools of iris
If we could just let go of the moments         
before

starry cocktails eye you suspiciously
from                                                    across the bar
a promise of a Manhattan midnight
some sort of Calvin Klein manifesto
New York will never be the same

You dragged me here with draught animals
fit for slaughter
surprise

And the noise goes on

                        hello Jon    
                                                                            Not tomorrow
                                
hello Joe                                                                           What’s in that? Ginger?
    
                                       and on
                                                                                           they are bound to leave
                     come on children     time to go

                                      and on
                                                                    an arts management major
    
a rapture of paychecks and misconceptions
tethered to an army of word fodder
shepherded into the western front

patiently awaiting tonight’s banshee ring
in the car ride home
a wall of muted translucence 
hollowing out the inner pulp of my wellbeing


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In Water


In water
          rabid dogs are led astray by the promise
          of lightning and some normative manner
          a primordial sluice in tempered glass
          An inner creed tying these interstices together
          compromising for comfort
          on our own insular plane

          our own questions embodied
          reflecting the refractory disease
          an outer dissolve of will and transience in situ
          a well-discoursed decadent and misguided ideal
          of slow-churning ember and some pillowed ambitions
          self-gratified world-turners who made offers
In water

Joseph R. Moore’s work has spanned from cultural criticism to blank verse, with feature articles and essays in online magazines such as Treble and Bright Lights Film Journal, as well as poetry in USF’s Switchback literary journal.