Green Hills Literary Lantern



A baby snapping turtle in a stagnant brook

blows bubbles while observing from the mud

a sandaled creature crouching for a look,

his ripple-causing sweat as warm as blood.


The sandal wearer bears and knife and pares

a melon one or two days past its prime,

a minor sacrifice to help repair

the rift that split them in primeval times.


Across the brook green hosta leaves provide

a fat frog midday shade from which to eye

the shirtless hauncher on the other side

toss flecks of orange melon as a fly,


returning from a labrador’s fresh dung,

is lassoed out of nowhere by a tongue.





John Popielaski has poems recent or forthcoming in The Evansville Review, Mudfish, The Ontario Review and Puerto del Sol. His second poetry collection, A Brief Eureka for the Alchemists of Peace was published by Antrim House Books in September 2005.