From The Imaginations

A Poetry Chapbook by Jean-Paul Pecqueur

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finchbird in the dawn

light filtered through lilac and yew

spring’s imagination inscrutable

sweet sweet sweet sweet sweet

timorous hopeful belief





A man tunes his balalaika in The Ramble
because the photosphere bleeds
through the stratosphere

a harmonic spectrum
of green encompassing.

You trumpet lonesomeness
in a new yellow dress.

One long low slow bright note,
your genius
is the inscape of extravagance.

With your eye open wide
you take in the entire world,
release barely a sigh.

I listen.
I stand and I listen.

Could this be breath?
Is this how it begins?




The Contemporary

The imagination of the contemporary
spends most of the day online
surfing an avalanche of images
and watching a little bit of tv

It loves mystery theater

When asked to name a sexy mystery
it googles “why eyes are windows for the soul”

When asked to consider the soul
it screen captures a virtual diamond




The Automobile

The automobile imagines a shiny desolation
Equal parts Marinetti and Mad Max
War and heavy metal thunder

Automobiles burn dinosaurs for fuel

If they could burn forests
If they could burn people

The automobile imagines this as it burns another hole in the sky




The Swift

To see inside the imagination of the swift
is to ride upon a blade of light

The swift’s imagination traces sonic parallelograms
It parties with the atmosphere

To see inside the imagination of the swift
is to slice sky from the sky





The blackberries
              never imagined
one day
              they would ride
                           into Brooklyn
snug in the backseat
              of a smokin’




The Garden Gnome

The Garden Gnome’s imagination
wanders through fern grottoes

over carpets of moss
and beds of ivy

in search of the lost paradise
of the Home Depot




The City

The imagination of the city
suffers from insomnia

It cannot stop the visions

The streets are a web of barbed confetti
The parks are no place to lose oneself




The Void

On the first day of creation
before the oceans unfolded from the skies
the void looked into itself
and imagined

It imagined motion
the distance between two points on a line
and fireworks

Invisible fireworks soon appeared
in eyes opening everywhere




Jean-Paul Pecqueur’s first book was The Case Against Happiness. The chapbook To Embrace Sea Monsters was recently published by Greying Ghost Press. In summer 2015 Forklift, Ohio will publish The Imaginations, the volume from which the above poems were selected. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Jean-Paul currently teaches creative writing to fine arts students at the Pratt Institute and lives in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.

Photo of garden gnome courtesy Shutterstock. is the world’s first online journal of place, publishing a rich mix of literature, art, commentary, and design since 1998.