poetry 0
Connie Pan


Tell me how the sunset gets in a bird’s wings, how they carved that
road to here. Two gray feathers decorate the walk between design
and secrets.


Somehow, within the same stare, snow and palm trees. In another
time, impossible. Remember to look back but only to witness
sunsets, to see yellow and pink blur into night.


“What is that?” you ask, spurring our game. Between big rigs, I
shout and point: —Toothpicks and napkins for God! —Hot Wheels
and stones for fishbowls! —Stir sticks and straws!


And now we know what to do in a dust storm. The coyote smiles
despite death.


After discussing a t-shirt slogan’s possibilities, we notice the clear
sky, admire endlessness.


Watching the blue bonnets and butterflies as you contemplate
chicken wire.


Look, a cloud. Let’s appreciate it, trace its dance across morning.


A man at the end of the bar says, “Good music never gets old. We
do.” Under lapis beams and a cowboy hat, lips croon, Shining in
the su-unlight.*


O, watching the impact of raindrops in the river, I wonder what
my hands can cup after this. The red leaves, in the outskirts of
sleep, resemble bleeding hearts.


I note felled trees, thinking, Of course they make a sound. Sounds
like creek- and riverbeds drying, snow falling in the desert, wind
through fingertips, the suck of rolling our windows up. Too many
lily pads, too many blown-out tires to count. “There’s a lot of
those,” you say.


Recalling the colors of wildflowers on our fingers, there can never
be enough of these.



*from Merle Haggard's "Silver Wings"

Connie Pan, originally from Maui, Hawai’i, earned an MFA in fiction from West Virginia University and a BA in creative writing from Grand Valley State University. Her writing has appeared in Bamboo Ridge, The Billfold, Book Riot, Carve, HelloGiggles, and PRISM international, among other places. A freelance writer and editor, she lives in Coastal Mississippi with her partner and their dog, where she works on her novel-in-progress.