Martin Balgach


Telephone words unfolded into the music of breaths and I knew our conversation had become a quiet mirror. Syllables rose like balloons into the smooth blue flesh of sky and that rotation became a gobstopper in the cheek of a ghost, and I remembered childhood--crooked paths cut through green-black leaves, broken bones cracked in birch excitement, the scent of wet rhododendrons before sleep. As a bee ate pollen outside my window, I remembered hands held near oceans, I envied the curved-hook of fun in a fishÕs mouth, I heard the tantrum of wet fins slap dry air. And I knew that easy is just a blink, that real is the pain of clouds above our heads held like tongues outstretched to noses, balanced in this distance where you wait for hours in a hospital bed and I exist in the selfish realm, eating my own fist for supper.

Martin Balgach's writing and criticism has appeared or is forthcoming in The Bitter Oleander, Cream City Review, The Dirty Napkin, Fogged Clarity, The Puritan, Rain Taxi, and elsewhere. He works for a publishing company and lives near Boulder, Colorado. More of his work can be found at

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