"Man in the Moon," by Poet Martha Carlson-Bradley

Man in the Moon

by Martha Carlson-Bradley

With the naked eye, just before dusk is best
for perusing the Moon. The Sea of Crises

off by itself—a beauty mark
that graces the left temple—

is easy to locate. The Sea of Cold,
though faint, stretches to meet the lakes

called Death and Dreams: they form, in a row,
a long, single eyebrow.

As the softest shadows reveal themselves,
darkness, on this face, is not

one thing—but various tones—
till night sets in, truly black,

and the Moon starts to glow in contrast,
hiding its finer details in light—

when we notice the mournful eyes,
mostly, and the mouth ajar, dismayed.

At the lowest rung of heaven
the Moon is looking the wrong way,

toward the blindfolded man who feels, hot and moist
on bare thighs, bare belly and scrotum

the German shepherd’s barked-out breath.

Again, the dog is growling, 1940, 2004,
while the Moon reminds us, in vain as it rises,

how every place is one place under the sky.



First published in Bellingham Review, “Man in the Moon” will appear in Martha Carlson-Bradley’s second book, Sea Called Fruitfulness, which will be published by WordTech Editions in 2013.

Her latest chapbook, If I Take You Here, was published by Adastra Press in 2011. She has received fellowships from the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts and the American Antiquarian Society and leads the Book Club for Poets, a book-discussion group for practicing poets.

More information about Carlson-Bradley is available at http://mcarlson-bradley.com and http://yourownsmallcraft.wordpress.com.