Two Poems by Matt Muth


Celebration Lane

Be large o heart hug the sum
of this world close: its shiny skin its Chinese
families stuffing fries into their kids
its Tesla bulbs its bindis tinsel
winking in Fendi shades all of us

a tight and liquid macramé
of living well the light show at the IMAX
a sentimental crumple zone the percussion
section’s toms the bands between
the majorette’s teeth: o heart awash

in artificial snow beneath
the Cheesecake Factory this grand display
a festive wreath hung from the gate of wealth
this teeming of strollers Santa
soap sound a soft glow

on the flagstones
made great and magnified in our weaving
a polity of mirrors beams of bright beating
us o heart listen:
a chorus of children

singing Living in America
and if they expunge Detroit City for Snoqualmie
be impregnable at the sight of this parade
and look at us o heart
so blank and brave behind the barricade


In how the eaves
of an unremarkable church
hang a flock of shadows
and summer draws
back as a hairline: you
could run thin
in a place like this

Could hold the weak
steam of godhood to yourself
in freight car diners:
skin filmed in honeyed
smoke, your life a knotted
rope and gone a fogged
mask between your hands

Such work to leave
this sleeper where it sleeps
(westbound flight, window
perch) with football fields
lit up on the beach
of night like sea glass
or beetles on their backs

Matt Muth is the co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of Pacifica Literary Review. His poems have appeared recently in RHINO, Rattle, The Adirondack Review, and Nashville Review. He teaches English courses at a technical college for video game designers in Redmond, Washington, and lives in Seattle, and he’s also a solid beer-league hockey player.


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