Poetry of Chase Gagnon

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Haiku and Other Short Poems

only in my dreams

does her memory

come alive—

a dead lotus unwrapped 

by the wind


The Bamboo Hut



watching the sunset

with a friend 

who's become more...

again the fear

of settling down


The Bamboo Hut



moonlight

sparkling on new snow

my godson smiles

as I read him

ancient poetry


The Bamboo Hut



wondering

who my father is—

echoing through these woods

the voice of an owl

I'll never see


The Bamboo Hut



walking her home

as dusk settles in

our shadows

melt into this world

as we gaze at other galaxies


The Bamboo Hut



dewdrops

invisible in the lull

before morning—

the chill of darkness

between my toes


Red Lights



new love

after a breakup—

in the silence after rain

the rock garden fills 

with fallen stars


A Hundred Gourds



chasing your ghost

through the backroads 

of my mind

I loose you in a legacy

of settling dust


A Hundred Gourds



In a makeshift boat

I paddle through her enchanting iris

trying to reach the black island

of her soul,

but the sirens that sing

of her fear of love

pull me to the depths 

of crystal green lust


Hedgerow #5



in the passing train

that steals my dream

every night

the faces of people

I'll never know


Notes From The Gean



making love

by a starlit pond

my girlfriend 

puts her cigarette out

on the galaxy


Notes From The Gean



texting

my long-distance lover—

for a moment I forget 

these clustered summer stars

are light years apart


A Hundred Gourds



her cigarette glows

on the other side

of our bed...

I watch stars melt

into the moon's halo


Kernels



midnight rain

ending the drought—

outside of the mine

a cart fills 

with the galaxy 


American Tanka



dark rocks

glistening

under a veil of water--

the echo 

of ancient prayers


A Hundred Gourds 



dead stars

cradled 

in my cigarette smoke

all the things

I used to believe


Skylark



wondering

how I'll die...

the feint outline

of the crescent moon's 

dark side


Eucalupt



sleeping together

under the frozen veil

of our universe...

shadows of ancient fire

stretch into our dreams


A Hundred Gourds



realizing

I never loved you

the firefly I captured 

dark

inside the jar


A Hundred Gourds



trying to remember 

what your voice sounded like...

a gentle breeze 

sneaks through the wind chime

without a sound


Skylark



the shadowy fingers

of night enter my room...

missing childhood

I reach for the hand

that used to scare me


Skylark



I wonder how many 

ghosts walk the streets

of this old port town—

the half moon, a ship

in a bottle of clouds


Skylark



no moon

to pray to, tonight...

I burn a hole 

into my arm 

with a cigarette 


Prune Juice



northern lights

swim across this frozen lake

I step

from my shelter

and fish the sky


Ribbons 



as if the moon

had a hundred moons...

lantern festival 


Cattails 



mountain sunrise

birdsong smooths the edge 

of darkness 


Cattails 



moonlit snow
the melody
of crickets' dreams


Shamrock



end of summer

my henna tattoo

turning orange


Modern Haiku



morning moon

a stranger's scent

in my bed


Cattails 



deepening autumn...

the glow of cigarette stubs

in grandpa's ashtray


Haiku Journal



in my florescent office

I wonder...

how small are the fairies

in the bonsai forest

on my desk?


Hedgerow #3



When I return to the earth
I’ll let the fairies play hide and seek
with my bones
in hopes that they’ll hollow
my phalanges into little flutes
so music can flow
from the tips of my fingers
that crafted countless poems.


Hedgerow #3


So Bad


How did I get so cold?
I'm not even old but I might as well be,
I'm on more pills than my grandma
just so I can fall asleep
then wake up dreamless from an afterlife
of darkness, in gray dawn rain.

I've lost my goddamn mind
somewhere in my messy skull
furnished with only a bed and a desk
where I sit naked digging through piles of clothes
looking for unwritten poems.

life's a bitch… my bitch.
I tongued her inverted nipple then chewed on it when it showed
as she moaned with pain —
or maybe it was a secret pleasure
so secret that life herself wouldn’t even tell me
but begged for it
because she's been so bad...
so bad
that my wrists are still bleeding
with what she calls love.


Otoliths

firefly ghosts 

in the frosted mason jar

harvest moonlight


A Hundred Gourds



stargazing on a hammock 

the sway

of my dream


A Hundred Gourds



lonely night

I slide my lips 

across the harmonica


A Hundred Gourds



alcohol on her kiss

nevermore

tattooed inside her lip


Bones



morphine drip. .  .

I sing my mother 

a lullaby 


Prune Juice



scary movie

the pulse

in her hand


Frogpond



from my apartment window

the whole city 

in the tip of an icicle 


Notes From The Gean



memories—

the sidewalk stained with leaves 

that blew away


Notes From The Gean



forgotten battlefield

a crash of thunder 

shakes the grass


Runner-up in Shamrock Reader's Choice Awards 2013



wishing well...

a galaxy of stars

on stagnate water


Shamrock



the light

of a long-dead star

my fake smile


Frogpond



waking from a dream...

the humpback's tail slips down

into the sea


A Hundred Gourds and Red Moon Anthology 2013



an ocean of clouds 

draining from the midnight sky

washing up stars 

like sunken treasure


Four and Twenty 



raindrops slice

through the moon's soft glow

only to join the sea, and gently rock

my boat


Four and Twenty 



night fishing

in a starlit creek...

the depth of the galaxy

around my ankles


Four and Twenty 



moonless night

she shows me

her hidden tattoo


Blithe Spirit 



lover's moon

the tide between 

our toes 


Blithe Spirit 



last embers

falling from the incense—

end of autumn 


Editor's Choice Award in Cattails 



candles flicker

behind frosted glass—

grandma's eyes


A Hundred Gourds



dad's suicide 

a candle burns away

its shadow 


A Hundred Gourds 



high noon

the vulture's circle 

lowers


The Heron's Nest



winter funeral 

the resurrection

of old photos 


The Heron's Nest



starlit creek

a tree frog sings 

to the galaxy


Lakeview Journal



fortune teller...

the lights of a distant train

shimmer on the rails


Lakeview Journal



miscarriage

the dark space between 

a crescent's points 


Lakeview Journal



morning creek

the moon slips 

through my fingers 


Lakeview Journal 



unknown solider

a firefly goes dark   

over his grave


Lakeview Journal



mirror creek

an old, wooden bridge 

across the sky


Lakeview Journal



midnight tundra 

sunlight resting

in the trees


Lakeview Journal



passing storm

the moon caught 

in a spider's web


Lakeview Journal 



her ashes 

settle into the pond

starry night


North Carolina Haiku Society 2014 anthology



Midnight approaches 

in her stilettos of stars

flirting with my dream


Haiku Journal



moonless night...

a gypsy's finger-cymbals

pinch the stars


Under the Basho



last star...

the weight of snowflakes 

on my lashes 


Cattails



rain in the pasture
the fawn's eye
cradled by bone


Modern Haiku


no one's footsteps

left to follow...

late winter rain


The Heron's Nest, December 2014



ancient songs...

an elder's sweat

rolls off the bone flute


The Heron's Nest, December 2014


if suffering
had a color…
it would be periwinkle
because purple sounds
far too real


Hedgerow #6



only the light
of dwindling candles…
a wooden crucifix
clenched
in cold hands


Hedgerow #6



goosebumps…
your breath, a memory
on my skin


Hedgerow #6