Issue Twenty - Summer 2012

Cold Comfort

By Dan Pettee

Cold comfort it was, the setting sun’s
waning rays smoothing through the rain-
drenched tree branches, nature’s stealth
beyond the ravaged plants; cold

and critical comfort, like lost or formless dreams
on waking to your world’s simplistic shades
by minuscule degrees, the narrowest of inches,
like sibilants lost to a wayward breeze.

Chill comfort indeed, the gerrymandered words
spoken as if sprockets coolly ratcheted
directly to the quintessential spin right out
of time, type cold to the vagrant touch —

so tantalizing, yet so out of time and thought
like leaves long pressed between pages,
essence lost to what once might have been,
sequential whispering, the trailing hand;

cold, cold as ice, such comfort, given
in pure parsimony, like a debt with rue repaid,
twice-baked goods absent the leaven
required to offer any lasting sustenance.

Cold comfort, there, in the outstretched hand
and the slow, averted gaze —
until the moment vanishes, and you left behind,
with only a slowly settling shroud of silence…

Copyright Pettee 2012