PoetryIssue 04 | April 2009

Two Poems by Martin Ott

Ghost Stand

Two eagles nest in a bleached stand
of dead pines, preserved in brine
from the earthquake that dropped
their roots thirty feet into ocean.

Tidewater glaciers ripple onto ice
fields that yawn hundreds of miles,
the crackle of ice plummeting
like thunder, like eggs breaking.

If one egg were to be destroyed
in the shell, the couple might try
again. Across the channel, a stone
fort points six inch guns down

to repel the Japanese. In Seward,
tsunami signs point up the mountain,
the town crisped from when oil tanks
poured a river of flames from giant

waves, the next earthquake inevitable,
the next war unbearably close,
the ice fields weeping into dusk,
two eagles living among the ghosts.

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About the author

Born into a gold mining family in Alaska, Martin Ott has traveled the world speaking a number of languages, all of which have been helpful in his work as a Russian linguist, a military interrogator and now as a screenwriter in Los Angeles. His fiction and poetry have appeared in over fifty magazines and anthologies, and he has optioned three screenplays. Visit him here.

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