Thursday, May 16, 2013

new from above/ground press: punchlines, by Aaron Tucker

by Aaron Tucker

why was the camel unhappy?

it’s still a good idea to contemplate
while the city sprawls out in waves
beneath our apartment balcony:

my father is dead hit by a car

I land + rush to the hospital
in time for the whistle of one lung working 
but my father is dead, mist

later I mow my mother’s lawn careful to avoid
sporting goods skeletons + that highway
that barn sprawling towards the cow field

I let the grass clippings blow onto the yard
careful to avoid thinking about that blade
whirling slicing through the flesh of my hand

slicing through my arm torso like an ocean drowning
|| a bumper impact || a twenty nine story fall
the way a yard might rush upwards me downward

as if I woke up on a river shoreline in Montana at sunset
repeating the same motion that the night takes
rushing downwards over the mountains

the moon whirls out + my mother goes to bed
dreams of my father pushing the lawnmower
back into the barn closing locking the door

that blade hyperlinks to
the grass pouring out
of my veins onto our apartment balcony

published in Ottawa by above/ground press
May 2013
a/g subscribers receive a complimentary copy

Aaron Tucker’s poetic works and reviews have been published across Canada. His chapbook, apartments (The Emergency Response Unit), was shortlisted for the 2010 bpNichol Chapbook award. His current project, tentatively titled punchlines, is moving ever slowly forward. More of his work can be found at

In addition, he is a professor in the English department at Ryerson University where he is currently teaching essay writing and digital literacy to first year students.

He is working on learning chess in between watching his beloved Raptors lose games.

This is Tucker’s second above/ground press chapbook, after apartments, section three (2010).

To order, send cheques (add $1 for postage; outside Canada, add $2) to: rob mclennan, 402 McLeod St #3, Ottawa ON K2P 1A6 or paypal at

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