LIGHT-UP SWAN – poems – Tom Snarsky

poems, Tom Snarsky
Ornithopter Press, 2021


Oh, here we are. So far from our own writing. Here, again, thinking there is little left beyond yesterday's afterglow, beneath tomorrow's aftermath. I always believe I'm done with it, of course. And then, oh. Here. We. Are. Tipsy, and weeks into listening to a soundtrack no one wrote for a nightlight while opening and re-opening Tom Snarsky's collection Light-Up Swan. And there is hope in the hope that fate might finally volunteer. That going missing will go missing not as ordered by absence but instead as a goodwill gesture given to a presence that needs nothing in return yet desires a return on our nothing. And is it ours? I don't know. What I can speak to is how quickly this reflection of mine reappeared but only because it believed it had vanished. I'm here for that kind of belief, for the kind of work that starts sometimes, as Snarsky does, with the line This poem happens in an actual lake. I'm here to feel...far. Something factual: The first poem here is called The Star-Field Paintings and it is very beautiful and hard to move on, or to be away, from. How are there poems after it? There might not be, yet I could speak on them, and have been, and haven't heard a thing for weeks.  


reflection by Barton Smock


book is here

person Tom Snarsky, two poems

Tom Snarsky teaches mathematics at Malden High School in Malden, Massachusetts, USA.


Ennui Inverse

The nowness of the danger of the failure to begin. Something waits at the end of the hall to comfort you. Imagine it’s strictly worse & your fault. Everyone has one terrifying wish. Captive, fugitive, symptom, lark. The pain of the future spreads across your body. The looseness of something spoken you didn’t record. Everyone has one dark year. The sound comes first, then the light. The light comes after.


Hilt Logic

I’m into poetry for the narcissism
Of never getting corrected. Other

Reasons, too. When you see baptism
In its proper, crystalline structure, the

Bells should begin to point to-
Ward the future we all agreed on:

                                                              a baby
Anteater, poking around in the dark.