by Nicholas Johnson
Flights to elsewhere are more necessary
now that awakening itself is setback after
setback as the mutual news sinks through:
We both look through a single window
after all. The view is bricked and bricked
and capped by towers pushing back the sky.
The more trustworthy, perhaps, can hold
their tongues, but ours need loosening.
Wanting to fly is natural. Birds pivot
on their wings and sound their love-sounds
in a trance of wind. Something betrays like rain
when there is the sound of rain but no rain.
The hour gained by turning back the clock
brings us this Sunday time, all intransitive time
allows, as light and afternoon wind down the page.
Nicholas Johnson (1944-2019) and Maureen Holm (1951-2005) were the co-founders of BigCityLit.
Maureen Holm was a poet, novelist, editor, literary translator, arts lawyer, and senior essayist and articles editor for Big City Lit. She lived in Manhattan. Holm received her B.A. degree in German Literature & Philosophy, J.D. in 1981, an LL.M in 1991. She served as translator/editor for UNIDO, IIASA, Simmering Graz Pauker A.G., Kunsthistorisches Museum (Vienna). She translated the German Bankruptcy Code for the OECD, and was an interpreter for depositions, hearings, and trials. Her commercial transactional and litigation practice focused on European licensors and manufacturers. She was a founder and co-producer of Lyric Recovery Festival at Carnegie Hall (a biannual of poetry-music).
Nicholas Johnson was the editor of BigCityLit. His chapbook, Degrees of Freedom, is available from Bright Hill Press. We encourage you to read our 20th Anniversary Issue, which is dedicated to Nicholas’ memory.