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24 April, 2016: Rhyme


by Philip Brady


Unseeable, unsayable, being dead.
But shadow-blooming iris, lip blooded—
I see and say. A child, I hummed
and rocked and hummed to dilate time.
Unplumbed, my tongue; but palpable
the pulse of subterranean ventricles
from Queens to Tokyo—turnstiles
ticking by the billions as deep as
Cocytus, where all suns clot.
What's mute, can names dilate?
The salt unseeable, where does it steep?
A key twitches my shadow, trickles blood.
An iris suddenly clots, the blooded word.
Unsayable, all future days unseeable
as unbloomed suns, even tomorrow blind.
My bones steep. Will we wake in time?
Does fear of not returning shadow rhyme?
Unseeable, seeable, rain unsalting seas,
and steeping in my saline blood a key
to Queens or Cocytus. Sayable,
mute death, the day all ventricles
dilate in time. A child, I could pretend
I saw echoes. Time and darkness bend.

“Rhyme” by Philip Brady from Fathom. Word Press, 2007. Used by permission of the author.
Philip Brady’s poetry has appeared in more than 50 journals and been published in three collections: Fathom (Word Press, 2007); Weal (Ashland Poetry Press, 1999) winner of the 1999 Snyder Prize; and Forged Correspondence (New Myths, 1996), chosen for Ploughshares’ “Editors’ Shelf” by Maxine Kumin. He has received the Ohioana Poetry Award in 2008, two Ohio Arts Council Individual Artists Fellowships, a Best of Ohio Writers Contest Prize and many other poetry awards. He was the first director of the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts Program at Youngstown State University (2004 – 2006). He has received a Distinguished Professorship in University Service for his work as an Arts Administrator and The Governor’s Awards for the Arts in Ohio, 2015.


Write a poem that is one sentence long, but the longest sentence you can write. You can find many examples online, starting with Robert Frost’s 14-line poem, “Silken Tent,” which also rhymes. Yours need not, but it may.

Cara Armstrong
I met this guy at Fallingwater when he was a high school student and thought he wanted to be an architect and now he’s I don’t know how old but he went to Yale and worked with big name architects like Robert A.M. Stern and he’s hanging out with the DuPont’s decorative collection and since he was in the area he went to this event last night and says you cannot smell Hillary at a rally of more than 200, the scent of a crowd overwhelms, but since it was in Wilmington, Delaware, which is a tiny state's largest city, he was able to smell Hillary as he stood behind her for a group picture and reports she smells generally floral, with very small moments of fruit and the scent doesn't so much overwhelm as "makes itself known," kind of like her--she is there, but she's not overwhelming; however, she's short and fit just under his chin which made him instinctively put his arm around her, as he would a friend, a family member, an accommodating tour guide, or a foreign palace guard-- the SECRET SERVICE grabbed his arm so tightly he thought he would pass out--but at the same time, he was hugging HILLARY CLINTON, embracing a hero, and, yes, the Treasury Department could remove him quickly and efficiently if needed, but it was a perfect moment because now he knows her clothes have the texture of tailoring and ease, like she would shop 'Off The Rack' if she weren't the most publicly criticized, evaluated, and important woman in the free world; her energy positively thrilled the room—he said, I have truly never been so proud to be an American.
4/27/2016 2:48:13 PM

READ + WRITE: 30 Days of Poetry is a collaboration between Cuyahoga County Public Library and poet Diane Kendig. Our thanks go to Diane and the poets of Northeast Ohio who allowed us to share their poetry.