How To Sing a Hymn

Yesterday, a boy
…………whose teeth could tell you more
…………than his mouth.

A boy
…………whose mouth was full of too much light,
…………whose throat fell in on itself.

A boy
…………who was either snow or skin, dissolved
…………or the breath it dissolves against.

A boy
…………who picks chicken bones clean
…………to make a house of them. Who smells
…………of alligator, of deep summer, of heavy.
…………Who stitched a sun into his chest.

A boy
…………who opens his chest for you
…………to keep warm in.

A boy
…………who smiles with his mouth open.

A boy
…………who, you are sure now, is not snow or skin,
…………but the sky that sings them.

…………

…………

How To Set Off Fireworks

How they part from the air above me,
foaming mouths licking skylines,

eating the bodies I tuck into the clouds.
A tooth mark on the dead dog

or in the air I have named Grandfather.
How each flare comes loose

wordlessly, leaves welts in birdsongs.
How the world

learns to bend under a bloody horizon.
How they tell me to cheer, and

how I cheer, fiddling with holy words
under my tongue.

…………

…………

How To Fear Storms

The priest feels a softness washing
the back of his neck. Maybe it is rain,
he thinks,
or sweat.

…………

…………


Daniel Blokh is a 16-year-old American writer of Russian-Jewish descent, living in Birmingham, Alabama. He is the author of the memoir In Migration (BAM! Publishing 2016), the micro-chapbook The Wading Room (Origami Poems Project 2016), and the chapbook Grimmening (forthcoming from Diode Editions). His work has been recognized by the Scholastic Art and Writing awards and the Foyle Young Poet awards, and has appeared in DIALOGIST, the Blueshift Journal, Cleaver, Gigantic Sequins, Forage Poetry, Avis Magazine, Thin Air Magazine, Cicada Magazine, and more. He works as an editor at Parallel Ink and a reader at the Adroit Journal. He should probably go play outside with his friends, but he’s busy worrying about the results of his writing submissions.