Showing posts with label Gary B. Fitzgerald. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gary B. Fitzgerald. Show all posts

Constellations (Gary B. Fitzgerald)


My father, the pilot, taught me

the names of the stars:

Betelgeuse, Sirius, Rigel, Polaris.

He taught me the constellations:

Orion & Leo, Pegasus, Centaurus,

the eternal portraits of imagination

painted on the infinity of dark.

I was only three or four when,

just before sleep, he came into my room.

He told me that he would be home soon,

that he had to leave to hang the moon.

The next night I’d ask my grandmother

to take me outside to see "the moom,"

so I could be sure that he really was

still up there.

Long after the B-17s and the DC-3s,

but before his beloved 707s,

my father flew the magnificent old three-tailed

Constellations, and many souls were carried

over empty seas, along the edge

of the heavens, presidents and kings and VIPs,

in skies then just as empty.

And now at night when I look up

I think of him and all the constellations.

I wonder how, after all these years,

they’ve never changed,

how all he ever taught me was still true.

I look up at the moon and imagine

what distant seas are flown,

what stars now skirted by his wings,

now that I’m sure that he really is

still up there.


Copyright 2008 – SOFTWOOD-Seventy-eight poems, Gary B. Fitzgerald

Burn Pile (Gary B. Fitzgerald)


Warm Spring evening at my burn pile,

hissing restless of the fire,

pierce of an occasional hawk overhead.

Otherwise quiet.

Out burning Winter’s trimmings in the pasture:

wind-fall sticks, old hay and rosebush clippings,

broken fence boards and leftover pages.

Some cardboard boxes.

A pleasant fire on a warm Spring night,

relaxed like a deep woods campfire,

just thirty feet past the fence from my back yard.

Safe and serene, but a fire still primeval,

like Neanderthal after a good hunt,

bellies full, protected and sleepy.

I drift in a reverie, communing with the ghosts.

But that damned tractor across the pond keeps

on working, roaring, noisy diesel clatter,

snapping of saplings and trees

destroying this otherwise quiet,

destroying the otherwise pristine,

disturbing my tranquil evening alone

with the ancient spirits and popping peaceful

of the fire. Some voices are never heard,

others never cease to intrude.

Did I mention what was in the

cardboard boxes?


Copyright 2008, by Gary B. Fitzgerald

From HARDWOOD-77 Poems

Modern Poetry: "Crystal Day" (Gary B. Fitzgerald)

Crystal calcite ball on a light box

Almost imperceptible the change
from dark to day's first light,
a feeble streak of amber
as the coal of night ignites

and burning bursts into vivid citrine flames,
rays like rosy quartz
illuminating wisps of pearly clouds,
and a crystal day starts.

I leave for work beneath a turquoise sky,
hoping for the best,
silver clouds drift slowly
like pale ghosts into the West.

And through the crystal day I march
under marbled skies,
while, preoccupied with my work, unnoticed
the glittering morning dies.

Like shards of milky quartz white nimbus clouds
are embedded deep in sapphire fields.
I focus on my business
and the living which it wields.

Aquamarine, now, as evening arrives
slowly darkening the day
with widening bands of ruby
like a painting by Monet.

Home at last to find my gray cat Jasper
decided he should die.
Heavy and cold, my heart; he as still as stone.
I bury him as I cry.

The sun, a topaz set in amethyst,
slowly sinks from view;
clouds of gold low over your grave.
I sit, remember you.

A life is gone and, hard as rock,
diamonds glow in jet black skies.
Twilight fades back into night
and a crystal day now also dies.


Copyright 2005, Evolving - Poems 1965-2005
Copyright 2006, Specimens - Selected Poems
Gary B. Fitzgerald

Posted with permission from poet.

Photo/Illustration: Copyright 2008, Jennifer Semple Siegel


Guest Writer: A Case for Self-publishing (Gary B. Fitzgerald)

In my opinion, a person is much better off self-publishing poetry if
they ever want to see it in book form. If one looks at the publishers of
books submitted for review to, say, Poetry Magazine, they will see
scores of small presses nobody has ever heard of. What exactly is the
difference between a small obscure outfit and a self-published book? Are
there that many fantastic editors and poetry experts out there? I doubt
it. I would guess that with so small a market and so many poets it is
only good business for the big houses to disregard anything
‘unproven’. Hell, they can barely sell what they publish now.

Few read poetry these days. You will also notice that when major awards
like the Pulitzer or Book Critics Circle Award are given out they almost
always go to the major Houses. Of course, with vested interests involved
this could be a fox/hen house type of thing. (Google ‘Silliman gang of
eight’ and read about how the big guys dominate the poetry market).
My point is that you can submit your work for twenty years, finally get
someone to publish it and then be completely ignored by the Poetry
‘establishment’ anyway or you can just publish your own work with
the same result. At least you have something you can be proud of (and
maybe sell). And don't forget that posterity thing.


This post originally appeared on, January 2008.

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