dan raphael

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Countries within countries.
Ridgetop borders, river borders,
borders cause there’s too much nothing in between.

How far can you walk in a day?  Where’s water?
What lives here I don’t know about?

Don’t bother to steal someone else’s clothes
before you get to the village—they’ll know
they’ve never seen you before and whose clothes
you’d stolen. The best you’ll be then is naked.

Narrow July

Highs around 80, lows around 60, for weeks
The weathers as stuck in routine as i am
Danger of sudden change
Would like some rain but don’t want 95
When you step out of  line who knows what you’ll find
I thought only one train came through here

My watch will tell me if i ever change time zones
My phone is hungry and looking for noodles or burger, maybe burrito
Without tastebuds but knowing the balance

I won’t go out today
Coffee before internet, practice before beer
Day to day, year to year
A hard rain lifts a piece of roof
An unexpected step cracks an ankle
The bathroom will never be downstairs

My hair stopped growing 5 years ago
At the rate i've lost pounds the last eight years
By the time i’m a hundred & ten i’ll be weightless


For 3 decades dan raphael's been active in the Northwest as poet, performer, editor and reading host. Everyone in This Movie Gets Paid, his 19th book, came out from Last Word Press in June of '16. Current poems appear in Caliban, Otoliths, Gobbett and In Between Hangovers.