Two Poems by Matthew James Friday

Summer Storm Over Interlaken

I watched the storm arrive
through the rented apartment window,
streaming blackness laced
with cuts of white cloth.

At the Craft Beer Brew bar on the corner,
stags raised their horns
and bellowed at every stab of thunder.

In the street outside,
dogs scurried and barked,
kicking cans and howling.

A tomcat snuck over the apartment walls
and stood in our balcony smoking,
looking up and wincing.

I cuddled up against my wife,
glad to have the wall and window,
between us and the angry world.

Then the rain fell in such furious sheets
that it quieted the stags, sent the dogs
scurrying away, made the cat leap back

to his boundary. We threw open,
and welcomed the water,
the relief of all things made equal.

 

For Iris

Winking from behind Jungfrau,
Iris gifts us a rare natural phenomenon:
a thin smile of cloud moustached by a rainbow.

An iridescent cloud.

Later I learn that Iris,
the Greek goddess of rainbows,
has been hiding in flower beds
and plain sight all my life.

She’s in my eyes,
coloring every moment of wonder.

She brought me Styx water,
and I drink from the ewer,
making the oath to see more

knowing If I keep my eyes closed,
I will fall unconscious.

This message carried in a rare phenomenon
revealed after forty-four years of looking.
I wonder what other secrets
she will show me,
hidden in eyes of stone.

 

——

Matthew James Friday has had poems published in the following UK and worldwide magazines and literary journals: A Handful of Stones, Bolts of Silk, The Brasilia Review, Cadenza, Cake Magazine, Carillon, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal (Hong Kong), Dreamcatcher, Earth Love, Eastlit (East Asia), Erbacce, Envoi, Finger Dance Festival, Gloom Cupboard, IS&T (Ink, Sweat & Tears), The Journal, The New Writer, Orbis, Sentinel Literary Quarterly, Sonic Boom, Third Wednesday (USA), Of Nepalese Clay (Nepal), The Peacock Journal, Pens on Fire, Pulsar Poetry, Rear View Poetry, Red Ink, South Bank Poetry Magazine, The Dawntreader, We Are a Website New Literary Journal (Singapore), and Writing Magazine.