Paul Jones

Paul Jones
has published poetry and hybrid forms in many journals, including Poetry, 2Rivers, Red Fez, and North Carolina Literary Review, and anthologies including The Best American Erotic Poems: 1800 – Present (from Scribner). Recently, he was nominated for two Pushcart Prizes and two Best of the Web Award. His chapbook, What the Welsh and Chinese Have in Common, was a North Carolina Writers’ Network award winner. 
A manuscript of his poems landed on the moon’s surface April 11, 2019 as part of Arch Mission’s Lunar Library delivered by SpaceIL’s Beresheet lander. 


Who Would Not Celebrate the Changes

Who would not celebrate the changes
in water on a fall day. The mist
caught in drab shrubbery’s thorns at dawn.
The rain ruling light as day goes on.

The range of it! Slipping into mud,
dripping from broad leaves, rivulets
in their moving hiss as they twist,
their calm pooling, their smoothed surfaces.

By late afternoon, it’s almost gone,
taken completely by root and soil.
Save the glisten kept in crevasses
of grey gravel that will by dusk

be gathered up—grit and pebble
under a skin of ice, before frost
begins to beard and bespeckle
the moonlit husks of bent brown grass.


In one hand, mine.

The other, yours.
On one palm, love.
The other, life.
But these tight fists
with fingers rolled
in defense like
have inside them
anger, inside
of that anger,
a new found grit.
Around that grit,
a pearl begins.
Open them quick
for a sharp clap.
Open them wide
to give a slap.
Hold them open
to form a cup
to catch the rain.
To catch cool rain.


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