a poetry e-zine










Poems By Taylor Graham



We sailed for hours on turquoise

water shifting to green as the zigzag

flight of wake-dwellers

dissected an August afternoon.

Tide for reminiscing.

Not a fin broke the surface


where there might be sharks.

Scavenger gulls trailed us waiting

for a bite. I memorized horizon

between the lines of Thomson

that exalt the Soul to solemn Thought,

one wave to the next –


each of his nouns so confidently

capital, the meter of solid ground.

Nothing so firm that afternoon

but sun sliding down

spar-varnish, water blue silk

till sunset into dark.






Twenty-seven years we’ve lived together

in one place, accumulating comforts, take-

for-granteds. I thought I knew every nook

and corner of your smile, the roadless view

from every window. Our rote of home,

of anniversaries. That same old piece

of Shakespeare you recited when we met.


Last night, at open mic, you – with a pirate-

swath of scarf across one eye (the left

not quite gone blind, healing from the latest

operation) – you became the Bard’s lament

of youth gone, everything forfeited by time

and expectation. How imperceptibly we’ve

changed. What did I really know of you?




Taylor Graham is a volunteer search-and-rescue dog handler in the Sierra Nevada. She's included in the anthology California Poetry: From the Gold Rush to the Present (Santa Clara University, 2004). Her book The Downstairs Dance Floor was awarded the Robert Philips Poetry Chapbook Prize, and she's a finalist in Poets & Writers' California Writers Exchange. Her newest book - Walking with Elihu: poems on Elihu Burritt, the Learned Blacksmith - is available on Amazon.

Copyright 2011  Chantarelle's Notebook