Every yellowed page haunted: The poetry of Christopher Lettera

By Christopher Lettera

 

Do You Want a Receipt?

How many funerals for
Things (as Rilke calls them)
has the hoodie-clad employee
of Goodwill Industries seen
just this rain-flecked October,

the Donation Drop-Off standing in
for the River Styx and he the ferryman
waiting? I kiss an ancient toaster
for it is still filled with happening,
holy crumbs of Pillsbury strudel,

my father’s hands squeezing my initials
in icing, in childhood, in morning solitudes
we shared. When I ask the ferryman
how he’s doing his eyes are blank,
he’s seen this before,

he replies only with a question.

 

 

Hubbard Public Library Book Sale

Pen your name on the top right
corner of the first page with no mind
for how you hate your own cursive –
awkward t’s in trembling black,
unconfident o’s wilting in Bic blue,

and learn to love instead:

every crease, every earmark,
every yellowed page haunted
with coffee stain, Virginia Slim smoke,
and the pulse of every good neighbor
you’ve yet to meet,

your fingerprints and theirs
overlapping.


Christopher Lettera received his Master’s in English from Youngstown State University where he currently teaches Intro to Poetry Writing. He is the recipient of the Robert R. Hare Award for fiction and placed as runner-up in the Ohio River Valley chapter of the National Society of Arts and Letters short story writing competition. His fiction has appeared in  Literary OrphansCrack the Spine, Postcard Shorts, and was selected for The 2015 Jersey Devil Press Anthology.

One comment

  1. I loved the poems! Very witty. Everyone should relate to the first one. I enjoyed that poem the most when I read it for a third time.

    Like

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