Three Poems by Corey Mesler

“Blossom and Chain” by Rachel Pasch Grossman


“And we are roses’ heirs.”

~ Rilke

Let’s say it was not a crown
of thorns. Let’s say it was roses.
Let’s say when they touched
his brow they bloomed,
first white, then yellow, then
red like a schoolhouse.
Let’s say it was not lost on the
crowd. Let’s say it was not
another symbol squandered. And
now let’s say that those roses
bloom still, behind our eyes,
inside us like canticle,
or the soft explosions flesh requires.
Starting with my Penis

I want to start with my penis:
the conversation chugs
away on its own track,
once started it moves toward
you, your stomach, flat like
wind over wheat, your thighs,
those shy monsters, your
lips, where sound becomes song
which leads me toward the
gate, your gate with its
partially tidied sashes, its
squeaky hinge; it’s not a gate,
it’s your mother part, your
midnight where I want to end up,
awake together, in beds blue
like midnight, the oil in the lamps
running low, all the movement
toward the center where I wait
with a poem for you, a bouquet of
inmost desires, in my hand a penis.

for the Ganuses

“We wildly collect the honey of the visible, to store it in the great golden hiveof the invisible.”

~ Rilke

The new neighbors keep bees.
They keep them.
There’s bee-music inside the
honey which they capture
with a small cut of hive. This
amber jack, this bee-loud, bottled
hum, they cross the street
and place in my hand.
I hold the glass skyward. I can
hear the sun in it, the ancient song,
the song of the sacrifice of
sweetness, and of light, and of home.

Corey Mesler
Corey Mesler

COREY MESLER has published in numerous anthologies and journals including Poetry, Gargoyle, Good Poems American Places, and Esquire/Narrative. He has published 8 novels, 4 short story collections, numerous chapbooks, and 4 full-length poetry collections. His new novel, Memphis Movie, is forthcoming from Soft Skull Press. He’s been nominated for many Pushcarts, and 2 of his poems were chosen for Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Almanac. With his wife, he runs a bookstore in Memphis. He can be found at

Read Memphis Movie
Read Memphis Movie

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