local_library After Rain, Portland

by Charles Thielman

Published in Issue No. 195 ~ August, 2013

Tonight’s street theater in rehearsal

around bridge legs, street urchins


encircle a fire barrel while pigeons arc

iridescent, unloading over happy hour.


I take in the view at mid-bridge.

Glass towers blued as the blue thighs


of clouds roll across the burlaps of sky.

River hauling debris around green hills


to the Pacific. Lines of brake-lights strobe

down bridge slopes, commuters fleeing


cubicles, becoming consumers on

that freeway’s exit ramp to the mall.


Swing shift break over, I approach

my factory’s riverside door as another truck


backs into the shipping dock, dark cave

needing a refill. I flick my break smoke


onto a puddle of diesel, half

wanting to ignite a distraction.

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Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., moved to Chicago, educated at red-bricked universities and on city streets, Charles has enjoyed working as a counselor, truck driver, warehouse manager and enthused bookstore clerk. Married on a Kauai beach in 2011, a loving Grandfather for five free spirits, his work as Poet and shareholder in an independent Bookstore’s collective continues! And not a few of his other poems have been accepted by literary journals, such as The Pedestal, Gargoyle, Poetry365, The Criterion [India], Poetry Salzburg [Austria], The Oyez Review, Windfall [Oregon], Muse, Battered Suitcase, Poetry Kanto [Japan], Open Road, Pastiche [England], Belle Reve, Tiger’s Eye and Rusty Nail.