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


sparkling on new snow

my godson smiles

as I read him

ancient poetry

The Bamboo Hut


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


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


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


midnight rain

ending the drought—

outside of the mine

a cart fills 

with the galaxy 

American Tanka

dark rocks


under a veil of water--

the echo 

of ancient prayers

A Hundred Gourds 

dead stars


in my cigarette smoke

all the things

I used to believe



how I'll die...

the feint outline

of the crescent moon's 

dark side


sleeping together

under the frozen veil

of our universe...

shadows of ancient fire

stretch into our dreams

A Hundred Gourds


I never loved you

the firefly I captured 


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


the shadowy fingers

of night enter my room...

missing childhood

I reach for the hand

that used to scare me


I wonder how many 

ghosts walk the streets

of this old port town—

the half moon, a ship

in a bottle of clouds


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


as if the moon

had a hundred moons...

lantern festival 


mountain sunrise

birdsong smooths the edge 

of darkness 


moonlit snow
the melody
of crickets' dreams


end of summer

my henna tattoo

turning orange

Modern Haiku

morning moon

a stranger's scent

in my bed


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.


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


tattooed inside her lip


morphine drip. .  .

I sing my mother 

a lullaby 

Prune Juice

scary movie

the pulse

in her hand


from my apartment window

the whole city 

in the tip of an icicle 

Notes From The Gean


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


the light

of a long-dead star

my fake smile


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 


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


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 


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
in cold hands

Hedgerow #6

your breath, a memory
on my skin

Hedgerow #6