Sweet Nothings

By Cliff Saunders

There is no brotherhood of smiling wizards,
no mantra against the bells of teen spirit.

No mystery here—stones celebrate with song
how they shape the world into mountains

and waterfalls, their voices full of gracefulness
and elegance. We ought to let them dream

like childhood friends proud of their wounds.
No peace to be found in a bowl of morning flurries,

no tin cup rattling behind an empty meditation room.
No glass slippers dipped in fine chocolate.

No silk purse from a seawall, no sail shutting
its door to a big world. No sleep, so sweet

on its tender head, no heart holding its breath.
For the record, there is no ivory-billed woodpecker

swift in mist, there’s no clock to complete ahead of it.
We’re thankful to the clock for its soul. We would like

to express our gratitude to the waves for their viewing,
but love is on us like a three-way web of lies–and it hurts.

Cliff Saunders is the author of several poetry chapbooks, including Mapping the Asphalt Meadows (Slipstream Publications) and This Candescent World (Runaway Spoon Press). His poems have appeared recently in Atlanta Review, Pedestal Magazine, Lullwater Review, Inscape Journal, The Phoenix, Vagabond City, The Main Street Rag, and Tipton Poetry Journal. Originally from Massachusetts, he now lives in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

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