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Poetry by Brent Appling 

Brent lives in Columbia, South Carolina.



© 2006 Brent Appling




Some Well Preserved Narcissism 

I'm supported by my grandfather's
thin stilts while my grandmother's
cartilaginous spider's web wipes the soap away from
my face and my mother's blank eyes
stare back at me from the toothpaste
stained mirror.

My father's skepticism lets his familiar
voice be heard and noisily
wonders where the rest of his
allies are hiding.






Whitman's Lisps

They sit with
propped soles,
in semi-urban
coffee houses,
swilling black
caffeine and
working at painting
their lungs to
match the
liquid shade.

Shielding their
faces from
criticism's incessant
gaze, they
regurgitate our
problems, though now
with professor
spun webs of "professorly"
searching for
the least feasible

Then I hear
it, that
soft release
of vocalized
breath, as of
now, only
articulated in an
imaginary capacity,
soars from the
pierced perch
and the
sustained "ssss"
rattles in my
false memory,
until the strangers
lisp registers
as his prized
I stood from
the table and
took uncle Walt's
hat from the
aluminum rack,
thinking of the
best place
to discard it,
accepting that
there would be
no rain light
enough that
penetrate its
ancient brim.





All work is property of Brent Appling.




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