A Poetry Sporadical of Repeating Forms


by Shaune Bornholdt

Put Prologue to pasture in shame after it happened;
Tomorrow’s forgotten its name, after it happened.

We found an old shoehorn, the rope, a corroded scout whistle
Evidence no one would claim, after it happened.

The teacher harangued us to boredom. We wrote our reports.
We added and factored the same, after it happened.

They put up some signs. Some lit candles. Some danced on the rooftops.
A boy set a doused cat in flames, after it happened.

The doctors revived an old practice, the knife to the forelobes
And some became docile and tame, after it happened.

The governor suffered a sex change. He frosted his hairpiece,
And pranced in his dress to acclaim, after it happened.

The architects swarmed with their blueprints, their models, their blather,
Memorial tickets to fame, after it happened.

The accountants set prices on heads. The lawyers went looking
For anyone whom they could frame, after it happened.

Sue dyed her white streak to black. MoMA closed. “Cats” reopened.
Serena improved in her game, after it happened.

The poets reverted to shamans. They stamped in a circle
And shrieked a recurring refrain: “After it happened!”

My mind has gone hollow. This show in the shadows is shuttered.
All words are born halting and lame, after it happened.

Shaune Bornholdt is a psychologist who works primarily with children.  Her poems have appeared in Hanging Loose, Schuylkill Valley Journal, American Arts Quarterly, and Podium, the online journal of the 92nd Street Y.


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