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C.N.P Poetry 

  • Writer's pictureCathexis Northwest Press

Hush; Soft Magic

By: William Pedlow


something wasn’t turn

to ashes fast enough

wasn’t grow or not-grow

and that was the go-between

how the soft heart

and the dynamo quarreled!

put a close on every note

that makes it move, make (it

ain’t non)sense?

big age is lightbulb on forehead

we find ways to say it that

fit the revelations mood so if

you’re at a party and it

gets too loud hush right

under the audible and

people will catch on

or someone else

will hush for you

Soft Magic

there is no risk in dark magic games anymore

summoned Bloody Mary tipped

the Ouija board

it is startling just how manipulative

people can be after 10 PM

the tricks they will pull to

make you believe

if they can’t rope you in

with the hard stuff

they will offer you soft magic

like astrology

which goes down real smooth

or watch:

the candle smells the strongest when it

gutters out

in the dark a neck bends until

it splits

a flash of black

bugs scurrying down the body

rejoin the shadows


the strongest ant

curbstomps the second strongest ant

but he can’t keep on like

this forever.

he has to figure out when

the second strongest ant

is far enough in skill that he

can leave him be

then he can kick back

and get



shimmer ragged

flesh of peach

sweet water holds tight

to itself

brighten the cavities

never a false set

even if a false set were more

practical or cost-efficient

I would want to go through this pain


lurid lurid stooped glaring

like a rind fingers

solved the next piece of the puzzle

not the mind

stars emptied all their loss onto the morning grass

it was so much loss and so little morning dew

they talked of it all night

and unfairly

I was so frustrated because that is exactly

what I did NOT want

to do tonight

soft magic

I was supposed to be drunk twice over by



William Pedlow is a New York poet. He works as a Park Avenue elevator operator and occasionally makes music. He once choked on a lifesaver mint. When the sense of panic subsided, he realized that he could still breath through the little hole. The lifesaver is still there to this day.


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