PoetryIssue 17 | March 2013

Saw Instrumental

by Henry Walters

Rathlin Island, Northern Ireland

Across the handsaw drawn—as across the world
now seems—her fiddlebow—a whetting, whittling down
to two dimensions—a plane edge-toothed as ocean’s own—
horizon-fretted—wind aslant a treeless (I would
have you listen to it) island—back/forth—(how, o
do you, how to tell you?)—Ariel—(slit-bound)—
as once your forefinger set a wine glass humming—bone-
less, lungless sprite fast in the cloven pine-rings wailed

& bent his pitch (how high?) within that windbent tree—so
that night her saw—sighting, aligning, sliding between—
shrieked out (still never cross the grain) the Lilliputian
stars—made of the room, walls, floorboards, table, us, a mouth—
an echo chamber—until we heard our worldsend through
the crack-(my heart)(she played Amazing Grace)-less distance.

About the author

Henry Walters is a falconer and naturalist. He keeps Woody Guthrie’s Bound For Glory in one pocket and a razor in the other, with which he keeps up a meticulous, every-other-day shaving routine in public library lavatories. Henry’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in The American Guide, Hawk Migration Studies, Miracle Monocle, Tuesday: An Art Project, and other publications. He writes a biweekly blog about life in the woods for The Old Farmer’s Almanac

Read our current issue:


Two poems by Anne Babson
Vignette, Townhouse, 9 a.m. by Troy Cunio
Night Becomes Day Over the West by Megan Foley
Yukon River Aurora by D. B. Goman
Two Poems by David Havird
Cretan Love Letter by Emily Linstrom
Holland by Rick Mullin
Fear in Kenya by Kristina Pfleegor
The Lounge Lizard by Ed Shacklee
Two Poems by Sarah J. Sloat
Night Flight by Vicki Stannard
Koinonia Farms by Alina Stefanescu
Thessaloniki, Four a.m. by Anastasia Vassos
Imaginary Oceans by Jason Warren
Two Poems by F. J. Williams

Postcard prose

It’s Salty by Kelly Hill

Travel notes

Anchorage in the Great Land by Karen Benning
The Value of Small Money by Megan Hallinan
Screensaver by Sandra Larson
Thirty Cents by Tommy McAree
Gokarna by Kate McCahill
Going Places by Rachel Miller-Howard
Susanville CA: Notes From The Road by Susan Volchok