Issue > Poetry
Al Rocheleau

Al Rocheleau

Al Rocheleau’s work has appeared in more than seventy publications in the U.S. and abroad, including Confrontation, Evansville Review, Illuminations, Adirondack Review, Studio One, Van Gogh’s Ear, Potomac Review, Slant, Iodine Poetry Journal and Poetry Salzburg Review. He is the recipient of the Thomas Burnett Swann Poetry Prize and author of the manual, On Writing Poetry. His Twelve Chairs Poetry Course, accredited by the Florida State Poets Association, includes scholarships for high school students.

There Are Sprites Of The Pities


There are sprites of the pities, as there are
sprites of love; they soft-alight the shoulders
of the lost, while others of the lovers
only, dress and talk appropriate their part.

Pity-ones are purply with black trim,
lovie-kind a brilliant pink, with gauze
in the accouterment; they whistle wide
their call, while brothers brood a hymn.

There is a navy of them; elect of old,
their roles against the urge to re-inhabit
so-embodied souls engender comfort
or a cheer against the warm, or cold;

I've whistled with a brightened one along
thinking all the world was limbed upon
a nightingale's song then found, at last
to be so utter and completely wrong

as tears would fashion from the real ether
graves of satisfacting pride, and measure
fit discomfiting for those who lose
their all within a moment of ill weather.

Commiserate, ambassador and me;
we fold our invitations of reunion,
setting all our boats to greenward drift
and one sweet square of calendar to see

the swift or subtle shift again, when youth
recalls its dancing onto bitter shore,
and every sprite-and-man can yet reside
within a single happiness, and truth.

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