33 RPM (Poem)

(by Daniel R. Jones)

[Note: this poem was originally printed in Bethel University’s literary journal, “Crossings,” in their Spring 2013 issue. It was the poem chosen for the “Excellence in Creative Writing-Poetry” award.]

The record spun, and the needle sung,
And tonight, he’s singing Sinatra.

And as the scraped LP
spinning 33,

was rung through the lungs
and the piano keys.

Candles are lit,
as we sit, just you and me.

The needle grinds in 4:4 time,
the song is sweet, and you are mine.

Dance to silence, kiss to songs;
we heard the words and sung along.

The song then over, crescendo passed,
the needle lifted up at last.

You stayed, and with your fingers traced
the laugh lines cast across my face.

And the touch and brush of your own hand
composed more poems than mine ever can.

Up from my heart arises a song,
that bids you come and sing along.

Extraterrestrial Tanka (poem)

(by Daniel R. Jones)

[Note: this poem was originally published in the quarterly print edition of Star*Line on July 1, 2017.]

amber-dotted skies.
paper lanterns wink:
night of the Chinese New Year.

scores of UFOs phoned in:
we slip under the radar.

The Sheen in Dirty Things

(by Daniel R. Jones)

From a kitchen window, I saw it,
my sudsy hands soaking
in a sink:

Pearl white, a silky sheen of a thing,
the taut, intricate patterns glistened in the sun.

And just like the first recorded question of God,
it struck me.
Who told you spiderwebs were dirty?

Becoming Apparent

(by Daniel R. Jones)

My son was it. I saw him peek.
I watch the children hide and seek.

When was it last, I seized the day
instead of watching children play?

They sing, “Olly, Olly, oxy!”
Is there joy, save through proxy?

The Salesman Passover

(by Daniel R. Jones)

Behind drawn lace curtains
they wait with bated-breath
blood-red “NO SOLICITING”
signs hung across the door.

They watch me pass
like I’m the Angel of Death.
Muscles relax.
They can breathe once more.