Lost King Forward by Jeffrey Little

 

I am tied to an office chair in a roomful of naked children,
each one painted a dissimilar shade of blue with a bird’s
nest knotted into his or her hair. This is Europe, as seen
from the side. Lost King Forward slowly rises from a pile

of oak leaves and takes a single step away from the fire,
he has a pocket watch and a basket of reeds. A factory
here eats starlight and shits fine blocks of steel. Outside,
the forked catechisms of the old dialogues endure. She

told me she’d decided to name the groundhog Waldorf
as if this explained everything away, and now, like two
lurching fiefdoms with a nebulous past, finally we could
both move on. The forest however is filled with crumbs.

One good look at the sky will tell you, legs aren’t worth
much anymore. Go ahead, ask all those stars in the tips
of the weeds wet with rain, they’ll tell you, the difference
between a kneecap and an army that’s danced for its food.

 

JEFFREY LITTLE is the author of The Hotel Sterno, The Book of Arcana, and Five and Dime. He is a 2001 Delaware Division of the Arts Poetry Fellow, and has published work in Columbia Poetry Review, Exquisite Corpse, Forklift, Kiosk, Mudlark, Shattered Wig, and Swerve, among others.