A Man Misplaced

Poetry / Trish Hopkinson

for Everett Ruess

A man misplaced in the desolate
solitude of monuments. His layers exposed
like desert thumbs, chiseled siltstone lines cut

across the grain and thirsting for ink.
A mirage can be liberating—arriving
in a fourth world, a dreamscape in the negative,

blackness brushed away with horsehair
and burnished into day. Ethereal elements
shook the grit from his skin, separated

the demons and left them feeble and ruddy
to harden in the sun. A man misplaced
carves out the landscape of his own ghost—
death’s first witness. His axis

seeps into sandstone, walls
that leave behind mundane
manuscripts and temporal treasures
etched into simplistic black and light.

Featured in Verse Daily’s ‘Web Weekly’ series (October 2, 2017).

Trish Hopkinson has always loved words—in fact, her mother tells everyone she was born with a pen in her hand. She has been published in several anthologies and journals, including Stirring, Chagrin River Review, and The Found Poetry Review; and her third chapbook is forthcoming from Lithic Press in 2017. Hopkinson is co-founder of a regional poetry group, Rock Canyon Poets, and Editor-in-Chief of the group’s annual poetry anthology entitled Orogeny. She is a product director by profession and resides in Utah with her handsome husband and their two outstanding children.