Poetry by Corey Mesler

Blues for Pamela Franklin

“There is always a real and an imaginary person you are in love with;

sometimes you love one best, sometimes the other.”

-Anthony Powell

I’m reading Anthony Powell
with the TV on and the sound
mum. Anthony Powell thumps
me on the cerebellum. It is al-
most autumn, almost. The
day is bright like a lemon and
like a lemon a tart, willing to
lift her splendid skirts. Or may-
be it’s just that Pamela Franklin
is on TV posing stripped for her
art teacher. I am stirred. Anthony
Powell imparts his tricky words.
I reach out for Pamela Franklin’s
perfect fundament but it is gone
now, these 42 years. I still long.
I still keep reading as the chill
enters me and pricks my sconce.

Corey Mesler has published 4 novels, 2 full-length poetry collections, and 3 books of short stories. He has also published a dozen chapbooks of both poetry and prose. He has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize numerous times, and 2 of his poems have been chosen for Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac. He also claims to have written, “Coronet Blue.”  With his wife, he runs Burke’s Book Store in Memphis TN, one of the country’s oldest (1875) and best independent bookstores. Email chmesler@earthlink.net for more info.



I need a simile
like I need
a hole in my poem.
There should
be more to this
but there are too many
distractions. The
metaphorical kettle
is whistling, calling
me away, calling me
by my other names,
Nightwalker, Fabulist.


Lost Because it Changes Always

I returned to my new neighborhood
to find myself
a stranger. I knocked on doors asking
if anyone knew me,
knew where I lived. I was spun around
like a stir of spores.
I walked for days. I wanted someone
to call my name
so I would know it again. More fell
away. My hopes, my de-
sire, my attire, my poorly constructed
sense of self. I ended up
denuded like a star, shining in the
blackest night, just giving my last bit of
everything, just hoping that
a fair spattering of light might touch
you, my immortal, lost, deliberate wife.