the poetry that matters

Delia Byrnes

Delia Byrnes is a poetry and short fiction writer from Vancouver, BC. Her writing has appeared in Existere, Misunderstandings Magazine, Tower Poetry and other magazines in Canada. She is an undergraduate English major at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, and is particularly interested in pre-1900 American literature. Her poetry reflects her interest in the intersection between nature and culture.

Her most recent chapbook is entitled genesis from Trainwreck Press.



He squeezes eyelids and panther whiskers lash the skin, catch saturn dust and rake the air. His jawline is creased a soft ravine mystic archive of mammoth teeth and mole remains. His body is dinosaur bone fingernails red sea tearducts and big bang brain. Hes so old, the boy.

Elegy: Part One

The shattered pelvis
song of crow
his black knuckle grip on time,
cutting currents
through the atmosphere.

On the ground, his chant,
funeral dirge of feet:
an understanding hymn
to the burden
of making a body move.
At night, his static sob:
the breath taken in
too deep, held in time
broken off too big,
this is it,
the silent mass,
the world.

Elegy: Part Two

With close of day,
the organ groan
of muscles knotted tight:
aching psalm of what was
kept inside, impulses
renounced and deserted
and remembered too late. 

The strains howl,
lacing through bones,
braiding the organ of Corti
into neat rows,
setting order
against the wreckage
of a raucous world.


It's too stark outside,
all that pricking light.
Traffic, voices
are the static
of a dusty LP.

Cross-legged on the bed,
I crack the spine hard and
let the pages settle on either side,
a portmanteau of silence.

Then, his voice.

It's a slow shot, gaining pitch.
Teeth clenched to a sturdy wall,
the tone now strained through
twice-thick jawbone.

Still there.

Still there.

The road clanks outside.
Gunfire each time a car drives by.
The light spikes, hits, misses
and tries again.

It's quiet now.



Bookmark and Share