Steven Trebellas


Because you are kind,
with hair like my mother's,
I am up in the early a.m.,
dodging sweepers and newspaper vans
making my way up Cardinal Street
on a mission of heartbreak

to brood like a cigar-store Indian
at the distance of one block
feeling your spirit radiate
through the sheet metal
and corrugated steel of the trailer park

where you sleep, along with your kin
beneath a single security light
in your tubes of tin. I remain
your Johnny Walker friend,
as the first ray of morning sun
hits your wall
and falls upon your breast.


A dirty little poem by one
whose car is stalled
in the pre-gentrified zone.

My hands are greasy,
the notebook streaked,
the Bic leaks like a dipstick.

Thank God I'm past
the bad architecture, and
closer to home. Selah.

All last fall they chromed
the up-town mall--very
chic, very contemporary.

Nobody showed but roaches.
Can fake stars and fountains
cure shrunken wallets

or broken heads? I'll tell you
a secret, there's a little piece
of Heaven out past

the power station,
where twin rivers meet, a
bench where the city ends.

That's where I go when
I get this hound blood.


for S. Moss

Shut down tight in a darkened room.
Traffic sounds fade,
the chilled air less noticed.
That was you on the stairs,
pacing the landing,
touching the railing,
its chipped white paint.

Northern lights cast larch-green
on sad row houses,
with their missed shingles,
and torn lace curtains.
You drift down slowly,
shake your head, then flip your hair
in the solar wind. A dog's life

before I see you again,
before I confess how hard I tried
to wake against the storm but failed,
how the sky filled with
loud black birds,
how the rains fell
and the rivers rose.

Steven Trebellas
Steven Trebellas received his MFA from Southern Illinois University.  He lives in Burlington, Iowa, where he works on old buildings and hopes not to have to teach basic composition and grade papers.  He grew up west of Chicago, the son of an engineer and a Spanish teacher.  He worked as a mechanic before completing a B.A and going on to study writing.  He grew up reading the "Beats."  His work has appeared or will appear in Boxcar Poetry Review, Pomeleon, Hiss Quarterly, and Cezanne's Carrot.



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