Three Proximate Sonnets by Ted Jean

Read More: A brief interview with Ted Jean

Three Proximate Sonnets

I

leap year sonnet

lift your arms to open the sky
bend your knee to enclose the sea
i can give you nothing
you can give me nothing

i accept

work become worthless
our once beloved house
but your breath, your mouth near
your encircling arms

i accept, my love

all the entreaties of others
the tedious trajectory of night into light
but the tilt of your head
in the arc of your arm

i accept, my love, i accept

untitled

II

spiegel im spiegel

rain glitter through street light
neon bar sign in gutter puddle
lover’s dodgy gaze

Ben feels like sight
registers just behind his eyes
possibly persuasive

streaming window lens
purple curve of wet wild iris
uplifted arms and lowered lids […]


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untitled

III

wavelength

the fancy radio my wife gifted
into my simple pickup
has finally died

despite all manner of punching and twirling,
little instrument won’t rouse,
nor even static startle, and
the bright digital time sign has flown […]


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A carpenter, Ted writes, paints, and plays tennis with Amy Lee. Nominated twice for Best of the Net, and twice for the Pushcart Prize, his work appears in Beloit Poetry Journal, PANK, Spillway, DIAGRAM, American Journal of Poetry, and dozens of other publications. His first chapbook, Desultory Sonnets, won the 2016 Turtle Island Poetry Prize.

Read More: A brief interview with Ted Jean