Poems by Michael T. Smith

Pic by Tom Swinnen




Behind some craggy hill,
hectoring me around,
I passed an Obshchina, in which
everyone was happy.

The sculptor
gave me a smile and sent me on,
but the topography had other
plans for me.

I was whelmed in a grief
unbecoming —
with susurrus gossip hiding within the trees —
shaking —
I was expected to be born
too soon for one so worn.

(But I love it when I can hear the sound of some aspect of nature and tell myself that it’s familiar to me –
even if I’m only visiting from the outside).

I read to the end, que sera.
My friends were all around me,
having been planted feet-first,
but now the trees’ crepitation
let loose the punchline –

so as the morn was diddling
the tired,
I sold that smile gibbous,
which was waning away with age
and asked the sculptor for something new.


Notes on a Poem

avant-garde poetry: so so nice —
a genius blending of the light,
which cannot be seen,
          but move like an alphin
                      –no, too obscure
…or is it all just a sham?
(No, take out, this out). Take me
out. Only delete those words
           that I use too much, like a user.
                                (is that PC?

and why does that word alone contain the
connotation of excess?) <- This line is too
yet most of what I want to say I say,

                stop the repetition —
but perhaps what is said instead is art instead

(thinking what rhymes with that —
bed, dead, read, said, bread, head thread, wed –)

or perhaps all art is repetition cleverly disguised.

            Like Truth.

in some classical slants
oh geez, don’t write like a check-list
…unless, it is a check-list

-ife —

                   (a typo that can lead into a collision of abc’s into an analogous game of God)

But soft! –ly? (Too Shakespearean – but what an

If ifif the (meaning, power, merit, worth, interest, value, synonym — ) of the poem (article needed? Speaking in plural? Do these words contain too many social connotations? Should I avoid connotations? Even the word


This is not a poem II

Ceci n’est pas une
          I don’t speak French,
I’m not even casually acquainted with it really, so it may


Full stop.

More so, I don’t smoke —
         said the man
to the
         man,                  (himself)
         But I do know how to lie.

This godwottery will only grow,
                       can ever know

the treachery of life.



I got lost inside an echo in my head
in a thousand fonts offsetting,
and on my ship voyaging so slim,
I sailed on thoughts closed up
like oysters who hid only sand.

Her face was like eye music —
a mooter for my past,
and I’m mixing holes together
in the stew of the long night,
as clouds make nature’s rarissima.

She said, “son you look bad —
from all the ruling mad,”
tracing the lines of my frown
she read my nimbose clouds,
a metopomancy with her index,

But I couldn’t wait by,
assiduously pronouncing “hope” —
for the lady filled me up
with loaded die and lies
(since I’ve been loving more).

So only I said lightly:
“Sometimes, I can give a little grin,
wouldn’t change it if I could,
but sometimes isn’t always,”
and my eyelids broke new ground.


A Momentary Lapse of Reflection

I feel like all — thoughts are based on
Like I’m connected to you right? —
          if there was no you
          there’d be no me,
But I don’t mean to be too philosophical
          I just want to cuddle you with updates —
                   that’s you.


About the Author


Michael T. Smith is an Assistant Professor of English who teaches both writing and film courses.  He has published over 150 pieces (poetry and prose) in over 80 different journals.  He loves to travel.