Anna Leahy

Before the Air

Before:

The air
is pregnant

with possibility of motion.


The sky

dreams.


After:

The air
has exhausted
its exacting form.


The sky
can’t think.


What came before the air?

What’s left for the sky?


Not for Magic

The desert sprites are dying all
at once. They had a chance

in hell. The elves
get tossed head over heels

like coins turning fiery
on the dime that fell

out of the sky’s flammable pocket.
The air’s too hot

to dance, but the flames do
what they do. What they do

compares to lightning if the whole
expanse were struck

bright and dumb all
over, all at once. But once

isn’t enough.
Not for the singe in the air.

Not for the metallic taste,
the spark of brazen imagination.

Anna Leahy’s book Constituents of Matter won the Wick Poetry Prize and also deals with intersections of history, science, and autobiography. Her poems and essays appear in The Southern Review, Crab Orchard Review, The Pinch, Gravel, and more. She teaches in the MFA and BFA programs at Chapman University, where she edits the journal TAB and curates the Tabula Poetica reading series. She also co-writes Lofty Ambitions blog at http://loftyambitions.wordpress.com.
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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis (susanlewis.net) is the editor of Posit (positjournal.com) and the author of eight books and chapbooks, including This Visit (Blazevox, 2015), How to be Another (Cervena Barva Press, 2014), and State of the Union (Spuyten Duyvil Press, 2014). Her ninth book, Heisenberg’s Salon, is available now for pre-order from Blazevox. Her poetry has appeared in such places as The Awl, Berkeley Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron, Gargoyle, The Journal, The New Orleans Review, Prelude, Raritan, Seneca Review, So to Speak, Verse, and Verse Daily.