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C.N.P Poetry 

  • Writer's pictureCathexis Northwest Press

April Aubade; Focus Objects; LOVINGKINDNESS

By: Anthony Warnke

April Aubade

Light blues, dog energy. 

Spring came on like strep.

I ordered you a Lyft, disabled

my alarm, and took in 

your departing breath. You said: 

“Sprite and soup. Gargle 

with salt. Your health is 

my health. Just. Rest.” 

You waited on the deck

for Jamie in a Camry. Loose

blossoms reminded you 

of death.

Focus Objects

The Orca mother carrying her dead calf for the fourth day straight. A man who takes his muffin without a plate. “Autumn

in New York.” My nightmare’s that

I’ll be on my bike, and I’ll stop at a red light, and I’ll be in a low gear, and I won’t be able to restart, and I’ll hold up traffic, and someone – another bicyclist – will go around me, and I’ll get honked at and honked at and honked at and flipped off and laughed at, then hit.


I rewarded my wife

with a tall boyfriend

and let my mom

run my life for a year.

This is compassion. It’s not

easy. Cross two lines,

and voila, the choice

is made for you. But

heaven or bust

is a false dichotomy.

Everyone has an angle.

For instance, on

my holy rectangle,

I keep typing out




I bang out


like a mad man.

Kurt from IT suggests:

“Before we change

your password, let’s see

if your caps lock is on.”


Anthony Warnke’s poetry has appeared in Cimarron Review, North American Review, Sentence, and Sugar House Review, among other journals. He teaches writing at Green River College and lives in Seattle.


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