By Thomas Page

Workshopping poetry means that many poems have their words excised to make them better. The original poems these came from may see the light of day but for now these excised stanzas and lines will be put on display.


Sweat glossed necks roll  
Turning curious heads looking  
At fenders crushed.  

Smiles break parodying  
The ambulance chasers’ faces  
Sitting above the accident.  


Seeing all of the lumps of clay from which he was formed  
Droop and sag with stretched flesh like taffy  
Ending on two trunks affixed to the soggy bathmat  


Finding the Fates’ string to pluck from its root  
Screaming mortality as it falls to Hades  
Clogging the pipes limed and rusted  


Four eyes stare up 
Hidden by fronds. 
Shadows of grates cast on their faces,  
Waiting for me to lose focus. 

[. . .]

Heat brings flies swarming  
Crawling all over my arms  
Looking for any scrap to consume--  
Digested in boiled acid.  

Two of the eyes appear before me:  
Speaking of mercy, 
Screaming for food-- 
I swat them away.  

Thomas Page is Editor-in-Chief of Academy of the Heart and Mind. He is also an MFA student at the University of South Florida

2 thoughts on “Excised Stanzas and Lines

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