Fiction   Essays   Poetry  The Ten On Baseball Chapbooks In Memory

Brent Calderwood


On August 4, 1975, thinking I looked Chinese,
you immediately told the attending nurse,
"Excuse me, but this is the wrong baby. Please
take this one back and bring me my son."
You told this story to visiting relatives often during my childhood.
Sometimes, you almost sounded sad in the telling,
and sometimes I wished you had been handed a changeling,
so that I might have been given to another mother,
one too filled with love to wonder
why her son was so big and blue-eyed.

The Way We Walk

Now we walk the way
we argued:
in circles.
We keep running into each other.

Like we argued
we keep running into each other.
Maybe you think I'm stalking you.

I'm ashamed when we meet.
It feels like I'm stalking you,
gun in my pocket.

I'm ashamed when we meet.
My need hangs like a
gun in my pocket,
no safety on.

My need hangs like a
no safety on
the end of a line.

I fish—
have we come to
the end of the line?
How funny.

We've come to.
We're indifferent.
Funny how
we used to come together.

We're in different
We used to come together.
Now we walk away.


are never
at dusk.

We need the night
to kiss lovers

part by part, then


©2008 by Brent Calderwood

Brent Calderwood is a writer, editor, illustrator and musician. His essays and reviews have appeared in magazines and newspapers nationally, and his poetry has appeared in journals such as modern words, Black Robert Journal, and The Chabot Review. He won a 2007 Lambda Literary Foundation Fellowship for poetry, and he was a 2007 Chancellor's Fellow in English Literature at the CUNY Graduate Center. He lives in San Francisco, where he is finishing his book-length poetry collection, Fault Zone, as well as a memoir.

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