The Answer To Your Question Is, “Nostalgic For” — Cal Freeman

the digital games that gave us the sensation
that as time passed something was at stake,
for those afternoons in the half story, wet plaster
walls bathed in blue cathode ray tube light,
for diamonds pixelated to a matrimonial glint,
quest fueled by my appetite for them, the object
to eat them or store them in a gunnysack.


Hard plastic grill eating flies, cabin temperature
set to 70, remote address in the Garmin,
Garmin programmed to a cockney voice.
I make it a rule not to boat. I make it a habit
not to fly. These innumerable pterygota deaths
go unnoticed, hosed into oblivion’s sewer grate
down at the coin car wash.


Looking back, each memory is an anachronism
recalling an anachronistic device, each
outmoded machine an elegy for the fictive
world it hearkens to. I could still arrow over
and up and launch the sphere to the awe
of the blurry crowd. I just can’t begin
to close the circuit of the horizon and zero
on a single point that might signify arrival
or the termination of a level or reveal
the tapered tail of a drug store kite.


Cal Freeman’s writing has appeared in many journals including Masque & Spectacle, Commonweal, The Cortland Review, The Journal, Passages North, and Hippocampus. He is the recipient of the Howard P. Walsh Award for Literature, The Ariel Poetry Prize, and The Devine Poetry Fellowship (judged by Terrance Hayes). He has also been nominated for Pushcart Prizes in poetry and creative nonfiction, as well as Best of the Net and Best American Poetry. His collection, Brother of Leaving, was published by Marick Press. His chapbook, Heard Among the Windbreak, was published by Eyewear Publishing (London), and his second full-length collection, Fight Songs, is forthcoming from Eyewear in 2017.