Robert Carr

Close to Hunger

Seems so long ago
I transplanted a globe cypress

The shrub’s taken hold
though I’ve lost a handle on seasons
I believe in summer

Nervous sparrows
hatch young at the green center
of a solstice

I peer down into
yellow open mouths

When I get close to hunger
the broken wings
of angels bat my ears

There’s a memory I’ve tried often
to forget – a nasty thought
that left me
with a copper bell

Reminder we all die
as sparrows swallow dragonflies

I drive a shepherd’s hook through the axis
of my cypress
hang my bell and corpses

Robert Carr is the author of Amaranth, published in 2016 by Indolent Books and The Unbuttoned Eye, a full-length 2019 collection from 3: A Taos Press. Among other publications his poetry appears in the American Journal of Poetry, Massachusetts Review, Rattle, Shenandoah, and Tar River Poetry. Robert is a poetry editor with Indolent Books and recently retired from a career as Deputy Director for the Bureau of Infectious Disease and Laboratory Sciences at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Additional information can be found at

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Winter 2021