Simon Perchik


Even before you touch
it has lift, rushes more air
over one hand and not the other

though once at the controls
spin is what you cling to
letting the knob drag the door

the way moonlight never leaves
has nothing to do with skies
closing in on each other

half rivers, half mountainsides, half
whatever you hold in your arms
is stone, counts the turns and when.



A jacket could trick my arms
help me forget once they leave
though what I become

has lips and around each shoulder
both sleeves fit the way skies
still overflow, break free

settle down, neatened
as if this mirror was still looking
could hear, I don’t see you, louder.




You hover the way each memory
stands by -the faintest scent
breathes down your brain

till its dust reeks from moonlight
and you cover your arms with air
holding them down, drag this table

more than enough for clouds
and though nothing falls
you’re sure it’s safe to exhale

making room in your heart
for the smell from skies
and what they too wanted back.




Heated by sand each word
gathers up another
one teaspoon at a time

-your fever can’t be found
though the address was written
from salt and glass -you don’t see

the envelope :the bottle
crowding you from inside
has to be taken by mouth

as if a lull made any difference
without the pieces to settle down
and already your throat tastes bitter.




Once it reaches this sink
the sun takes nothing back
lets you place water

and forever it’s your shadow
wandering the Earth
the way all twins are born

already cold -you rinse
as if moonlight were leaving it
damaged, a scar would come

so this cup you hold you hold
twice, gropes alongside
as darkness though the faucet

still leaks, flows through your arms
draining hillside after hillside
from riverbeds and almost there.

Simon Perchik

Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, The Nation, The New Yorker, and elsewhere. For more information, including free e-books, his essay titled “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” and a complete bibliography, please visit his website at His new book is Almost Rain (River Otter Press) 2013.