By Dean Brooks

                                                      I'm not drawn by the moon, howling
                                                      But coerced by the fingertips of the loneliest hour
                                                      Where fears are underplayed—cigarettes
                                                      Are not a threat, but a companion, as is the soft hum 
                                                      Of the streetlight (for my purposes, the imitation moon),
                                                      Before the bully sun
                                                      Elbows its way through the sky

                                                      This isn't the still-up night,
                                                      A loud Friday at the bar to prepare
                                                      For a missed morning, but
                                                      The already-awake night
                                                      Hovering in the cusp of dawn
                                                      Dark enough that, if I were still a child
                                                      I would be afraid, and as an adult,
                                                      Am, though in a different, definite regard--
                                                      Closing the door with minimal noise
                                                      To let the mother robin
                                                      Ten feet above me
                                                      Sleep without intrusion

cigarette3Dean Brooks graduated from Bemidji State in the spring of 2012 with a degree in Creative Writing. His poetry has been featured on KAXE’s “The Beat” in a poorly-read voice.