Poetry by Holly Painter
Cryptic Crossword XIV
In casino town, butcher saves gal,
ladies’ man, and stagehand
from fire – they go back to family, as she sets off,
wandering far to let go of odorous
smoke. With erect gait, processing
defeats with infinite heart, the woman’s
bearing a man’s lubricant: liquor.
Las Vegas playboy
ashes fragrant cigarette
Cryptic Crossword XIX
Hear lesson of the cow:
I live in Vermont in gray solemnity
hovering over animal feed consumed by chuck-
providing bovines. Modern
holy man confines curious
spirit to composing earth poems.
At last, we listen closely,
soaring with the aerial.
Floating in strange atmosphere
Holly Painter is a poet, writer, and editor from southeast Michigan. Her first full-length book of poetry, Excerpts from a Natural History, was published by Titus Books in Auckland, New Zealand in 2015. Her poetry, fiction, and essays have also been published in literary journals and anthologies in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, China, and Singapore. Holly teaches writing and literature at the University of Vermont.