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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 3: May 2020
Poem: 153 words
By Steve Deutsch

Message in a Bottle

 
I was hoping 
you might read this. 
Come upon it 
unexpectedly 

in that journal 
with the intriguing name 
you often fan through 
but never buy 

in that famed bookshop 
on the avenue 
in the city 
you now call home. 

Or in a dog-eared 
and stained anthology 
broken by age 
on a crowded shelf 

between Ammons 
and Auden 
in the library 
just down the block 

from the garden 
apartment 
you share 
with your sister. 

Or hear it read 
on YouTube 
accompanied 
by viola and cello 

by that old poet 
whose once sonorous voice 
is fading faster 
than his face 

as you wait for dinner 
in that care facility 
overlooking 
the once scenic lake. 

And you might 
have the urge 
to reach me 
one last time 

before the meter expires 
on the lives 
we have borrowed. 
But, better perhaps if not. 

And, anyway, how? 
Still,  I hope 
you’re reading 
this now.

Steve Deutsch
Issue 3, May 2020

lives in State College, Pennsylvania, and is the author of two books published by Kelsay Press: a chapbook, Perhaps You Can (2019), and the full-length Persistence of Memory (forthcoming in September 2020).

His recent writing has appeared or is forthcoming in 8 Poems, Algebra of Owls, Better Than Starbucks, Biscuit Root Drive, Borfski Press, Burningword Literary Journal, Eclectica Magazine, Evening Street, Flashes of Brilliance, Ghost City Review, Gravel, Linden Avenue Literary Journal, Literary Heist, Louisiana Lit, Misfit Magazine, Mojave River Review, New Verse News, Nixes Mate Review, Panoply, San Antonio Review, Softblow, Streetlight Press, The Blue Nib, The Broadkill Review, The Drabble, The Ekphrastic Review, The Muddy River Poetry Review, The Write Launch, Thimble Magazine, Third Wednesday, and Word Fountain. His work was nominated in 2017 and 2018 for the Pushcart Prize.

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

Poet, in Eclectica Magazine (Volume 22, Number 2, April/May 2018)

Flotilla, first published in the anthology Weatherings (FutureCycle Press 2015), and later posted on Sarah Russell Poetry (16 June 2018)

 
 
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