“Tuning Institute” by Gregory Kimbrell

The people next door are [watching our] home from the window [again], coldly laughing, you say, laughing like leopard seals at [our] homosexuality. [Even] the dead know about you and your man. This is the voice of someone who [has] lived in a place [piled] with ashes. In the distance, [the fact of] the nuclear power plant [punctures] the empty spring morning. While this [housing complex may] face reduction to a sea of fire, the ghosts will [survive] as [crystalline] sand. No home is not connected [to its neighbor], you say, [except] by the people inside[.] The work of any land is witchcraft[.] And the treated water in the cold aluminum [tumbler] tastes like [an] empty mind[.] Deaf to my opinion, you play with the cat [tattooed] on your left thigh. Hello dreams, [you say,] dreams the color of fish in autumn, the color of the [very] beginning.


Gregory Kimbrell is the author of The Primitive Observatory (Southern Illinois University Press, 2016), winner of the 2014 Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Award. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in IDK Magazine, Infinite Rust, Otoliths, Phantom Drift, Rabbit Catastrophe Review, and elsewhere. More of his writing, including his sci-fi/horror magnetic poems, can be found at gregorykimbrell.com.