PHILIP SCHAEFER

BACKYARD MIRAGE THERAPY


My empty is half glass. Pots boil and boil so I water the lawn with gasoline. Naked the only way to describe these emotional blackouts. A tree collects kites, birds with songs too tired. Watch them figure it out, I say aloud to no one. My headspace is crawlspace, my knees deep down in soil. I say I could hit the sky with a floorboard. I spit out ants. A little word fungus, a little lung cancer in how I decide to stop talking to the moon. I’m balding with it and the neighbor girl is playing heart & soul on the recorder. October always just a few months away. I dig through the garage: old tricycles and wooden tennis rackets. I smile through a hazmat mask, tell the VHS tapes I will take them to their leader. The car’s rumbling with a handkerchief in the muffler. The air is sweeter on this planet. Keep up, I say. Let’s soar into 44th. The windshield a lake with smoke in its hair. Sun in the splintered corner of the rearview mirror. Let’s close our eyes. Let’s try to think like an out-patient.

 

Philip Schaefer is the author of three chapbooks. [Hideous] Miraculous is forthcoming from BOAAT Press, while Radio Silence (forthcoming 2016 from Black Lawrence Press) and Smokes Tones (available from Phantom Limb) were co-written with poet Jeff Whitney. Individual work is out or due out in Vinyl, The Cincinnati Review, Prelude, Forklift Ohio, DIAGRAM, Sonora Review, H_NGM_N, cream city, Columbia Poetry Review and Hayden’s Ferry among others. He tends bar at a craft distillery in Missoula, where he received his MFA from the University of Montana.
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