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Nocturne and other Poems

Frederick E. Whitehead

From the book:

day of the dead

after the painting by Diego Rivera

looking back

I cannot understand

         on such a day as that

why we were the only ones

with tequila on our lips


lovely in black dress

the brooch

I bought for you

in Juarez

the month the butterflies returned

me in hat and tie

      both a color

you said reminded you

of marigolds you placed on your mothers alter

I nodded along to the music

which I believe you took as a sign that I agreed

you wanted to go to the celebration

because of a sense of tradition and honor

I just wanted to get drunk and

watch an ocean of skulls flow by

making up stories

for every one of the faces

that hid behind them

sonnet 1

the woodshed door was secured

with a drift pin ran through a pair of eyes

he had the logs split and stacked by July

December should see wood well cured

won’t need it sooner unless surprised

by an early winter—which he heard

from guy at the feed store who was sure

would happen if you were to go by the skies

the Inuit say they are not as they were

the stars lately seem to track different lines

the seal the bear the snows practically cry

but man ignores any suggestion for a cure

having no answers he shouldered a bag of grain

and surely felt older than when he came in

Nocturne and other Poems

is a 40 page hand-stitched chapbook - $10.00

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Contains 8 Sonnets and

20 Ekphrastic poems.

Click here to view a PDF of the artwork that inspired the ekphrastic poems.