I now have one regular patron who sends a monthly contribution to keep this poet alive. Yes, per usual, I'm a poor poet...and for some reason I'm a poor poet in its many meanings...but someone like my patron loves my work. If you become a sustaining patron I can guarantee you'll see writing from me on a regular basis. I do edit my mad. But I don't always hit it out of the park. At least my patrons have a chance to select from all my work...and they become the editors rather than the small-minded who often edit magazines and journals. Poet James Wright,one of his last books, held by two editors for the longest time that his wife Anne took to another publisher who snapped it up and it became a huge success. Now I don't have people like Robert Bly, Don Hall, or their equals I can send my poems to for a review before I put them on the internet or send to any publisher. I believe in opening up my "horde" for the world to critique or love. And it's expensive to send out my work, getting only rejection, so it's money I don't have for food, or the electric bill. Please send what you can via my email: via Paypal. I thank those who support me one way or another.


Thank you to those who have contributed via Paypal to support my writing. My account at Paypal is the same as my email: rikwrybac(at)

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Thursday, January 12, 2012

238 Ghosts

[Part of a multi-part, epic poem currently being written surrounding events of June 9, 1972, The Black Hills Flood, during which thousands became homeless, hundreds and hundreds injured, and 238 people lost their lives in one night of flash flooding.]

They roam the land where I live

and yet I don't live here

they do

I am as invisible to them

as you are

They go shopping

for their invisible lunches

full of twigs and broken glass

they walk through the wrinkled hills

filled with steep evergreen canyons

as deep as wooden coffins

looking for nothing

but what they see

just empty towns

and houses without people

These collaborators in a dark parade

occasionally meet each other

nod, say hello

some know each other

others do not

Their silent conversations

contain broken tail lights and splintered siding

with knowing glances inside knowing eyes

unseen portraits to each other

slashed canvases covered in damaged oils

seething with life and love

none of it loud

quiet ghosts filling empty spaces

Magnetized by one day and the hours of rain

they stick to the sides of canyons

bits of bark trees and grass

an occasional coffee pot

part of a chair

the springs of a twisted bed

across the creek from a house

that stands to this day

Sometimes naked

they breathe as they remember

their last breath

the chest rises and falls

their last breath goes in and out

seconds after second minutes after minute

hours after hour days after day

their last breath makes them live for us

Copyright © 2012 by Barry G. Wick

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