Fiction   Essays   Poetry  The Ten On Baseball Chapbooks In Memory

Mark Jackley

Life in an All-Night Diner

where they serve amazements
like the stillness
of a leaning rake

shy gray rain
that's finally here,
cars abandoned deep

in grasses quiet as the sea,
the scar on Mary's belly

my fingers,
clutching the menu,
trembling ravenously

Photo of my Mother as a Newlywed

Occupied Germany, 1950.
The small-town girl who married her soldier.
Innocent ringlets and wool sweater,
posing on ice skates. Yet the impish
smile foretelling the sorcery she
seems to know already,
how one day she will conjure me
in her own darkroom.

Returning From the Airport
When Dad Went to Vietnam

When Mom dissolved in tears
the rest of us started sobbing,
my brother and I in crew cuts,
my sisters clutching Barbies.

Fear had slipped into the car,
stealthy in black pajamas.
Cold fingers gripped our throats.
The ambush was a slaughter.

©2006 by Mark Jackley

Mark Jackley is a business writer who lives in the Washington, DC, area. His poems have appeared in various journals, and his chapbook, Brevities, is scheduled to be published later this year by Ginninderra Press.

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