George T. Mormann

Tag: poetry

Oh Kabul

Home of the only McDonald’s in Afghanistan
Your Golden Arches© alight
Our flag to be brought down for good

Folded twice over to make a taut Imperial Triangle
With the United Kingdom
With the Union of Soviet Socialists Republic

We are not in a state of decline!
We are not in a state of collapse!
We are merely enduring

a strategic liquidation of relevance.


Being a trucker, you take a small piece of someplace whenever you leave. In Detroit, a stray brick from the wall of a derelict factory where you used to deliver. In Sioux Falls, the plucked feather of a grouse that adorned your mesh cap and gave rise to your CB radio handle, Chief. In Reno, you caught the elusive barfly, whose life cycle had spanned the sweated rings of innumerable beer mugs, whose glazed eyes projected a million glints from the shade of stained glass windows, and who wandered into traffic, buzzed, to play chicken with you, the weary traveler.

Youth, it is

a sandcastle
admired for a day,
abandoned to the
inevitable tide.
Photographs, like
grains of sand,
rouse the shallows
where memory wades.

a dollop chased out
of a jar of promises,
an arthritic swivel
of a fingertip
twisting counter-
clockwise against
the hands of time.

reclaimed in somber
over a box of ash
filled before the age
of seventy.

Writer’s Block

Stepping into the void
of this old factory
I smell only the dust
that awakes to the clack of my heels.
The rust of use blankets the head
and keeps it warm throughout
a seemingly endless winter.
I am unable to imagine
the ghosts;
the wind has their breath.
It creeps through a checkerboard
of broken windows,
or mountains as I see them
from here,
on the production floor.


Originally posted September 17, 2012

Century of Progress

SNEED-081717-01.JPGGuard o’er the travertine
casting prospectus to sea

For the mariner,
his light

For a rower,
it’s shadow

For the pilot,
a token

From Antica it shall
again be pilfered

And again, promises
to harbor triumph