As we wait for our first themed issue in four years, “Liminal,” to return from the printer, our poetry editor, Shazia Hafiz Ramji, shares a sneak peek from its pages. “Deep-sea Radio” by Ned Baeck is forthcoming in the Fall issue (56.1) of PRISM. Shazia first heard Baeck read his work at the Twisted Poets Literary Salon open mic at the Cottage Bistro in Vancouver and reached out to him for some poems soon after. Read Baeck’s poem, “Deep-sea Radio,” below.
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Grace and clarity,
ease and precision
in speech, this is you.
But the vacant feeling
when I rummaged like a beggar
in your eyes, hoping for a morsel.
I’m back in my car
and snowflakes are swirling
into the windshield,
it’s late and I’m partially mesmerized.
I remember not driving
and then driving drunk, a terrible kind
of drunk—abdication, flooring the pedal
and killing the lights.
Because one must renounce or conquer
and I did neither.
Shrunken and anachronistic
in this old whale’s belly of a world,
listening to the deep sea radio.
Tinkering with sound waves
through cetaceous walls.
Each partially sensible song,
each day returned to,
loved, and found wanting.
Ned Baeck lives in Vancouver. His poems have recently appeared in untethered, The Continuist and Sewer Lid. His first full-length collection of poems is forthcoming from Guernica.