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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 14: August 2022
Poem: 154 words
By Paul Ilechko

Long Migration

Things get turned around     down becomes up 
and up becomes down     but the birds still fly into 
glass and knock themselves out     believing 
too strongly in an unbounded sky     and we sit there 
on the grass of the village green     a picnic basket 
perched precariously between today and tomorrow 
it’s a feast or so we think      we brought cloth 
and candles and a bottle of pale wine     not expecting 
to share it with anyone but ourselves      refilling 
our bottles from the river that flows to the ocean 
and then drifting into sleep      where we dream 
a joint dream     each aware of the other     a kind 
of telepathy     where characters migrate across 
the empty space between emotion and sensation 
both of us knowing that when we awake the feast 
will be gone      and the blankets will be gone 
and the dead birds will have been resurrected 
having once again begun their long migration. 


Paul Ilechko
Issue 14, August 2022

is a British/American poet. Born in South Yorkshire, he now lives with his partner in Lambertville, New Jersey. His work has appeared in a variety of journals, including The Night Heron Barks, Louisiana Literature, Iron Horse Literary Review, Clackamas Literary Review, and Book of Matches. His first album, Meeting Points, was released in 2021.

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