Thursday, February 5, 2015

Two Poems by Michael Lee Johnson

Jesus in a Nighttime City

Jesus walks
Southwest side
Chicago nighttime city
in bulletproof vest
stores closed,
blasted windows,
mink furs stolen,
a few diamonds for glitter
old parks, lost quarters, nickels, dimes,
black children on Merry go rounds, Maywood, IL
danger children run in danger
in spirit, testimony,
red velvet outdates His robe.

Clock Maker

Solo, I am clock maker
born September 22nd,
a Virgo/Libra mix insane,
look at my moving parts, apart yet together,
holes in air, artistic perfection,
mechanical misfits everywhere,
life is a brass lever, a wordsmith, an artist at his craft.
Clock maker, poet tease, and squeeze tweezers.
I am a life looking through microscope,
screen shots, snapshot tools,
mainsprings, swing pendulum, endless hours,
then again, ears open tick then a tock.
Over humor and the last brass bend,
when I hear a hair move its breath,
I know I am the clock waiter,
the clock maker listens-
a tick, then a tock.

Michael Lee Johnson lived ten years in Canada during the Vietnam era:  now known as the Illinois poet, from Itasca, IL.  Today he is a poet, freelance writer, photographer who experiments with poetography (blending poetry with photography), and small business owner in Itasca, Illinois, who has been published in more than 750 small press magazines in 27 countries.  He edits 8 poetry sites.  Michael is the author of The Lost American:  From Exile to Freendom (136 page book), several chapbooks of poetry, including From Which Place the Morning Rises and Challenge of Night and Day, and Chicago Poems.  He also has over 70 poetry videos on YouTube.

1 comment:

  1. Michael Lee Johnson startles us with two amazing poems. With “Jesus in a Nightime City” we have a barefoot Jesus walking on very dangerous nighttime streets of broken glass in Southwest Chicago. The world itself is broken, and Jesus finds it necessary to wear a bulletproof vest.

    Then Michael treats us with a very witty self-portrait of his “Virgo/Libra mix insane” in the poem, “Clock Maker.” It turns out that Michael is also a mix of “Clock Maker” and “Clock Waiter.” As if that were not enough, his “moving parts . . .” are “ . . . apart yet together.” He is also a “tick, then a tock.” 

    Raymond Keen – author of “Love Poems for Cannibals”