Two Poems by Daniel Edward Moore

Small Obsessions

Moved as I am,
          to love little things,
like a mote in the eye
             of a blinking god
or the spider whose life
          depends on my foot,
marrying a ballerina
                    or soldier.
What is it about
          the intensity of small,
beating my chest like
       a handsome paramedic,
breaking my ribs as
    the hummingbird’s beak
pokes me with the meaning
          of pierce and release?

The older I get the
                    more torn I am
by how tenderness
      looks like a tiny house
built by the starfish
            of rugged hands,
big and wide as the
         ocean that made them,
my heart, a million pieces
    of shells, happy
to hold those rays
   of light from which
I am bound to burn.


I am Not the Face

If you’re living in a
warehouse of secret rooms

find a face you can trust,
to tell you what is real.

You forgot your address years ago.
Make sure they know that.

Make sure your ghostly breath
stumbling through lips

on a Sunday morning
reminds you of the way a

soldier kissed after laying
his gun before God.

Then ponder the
question of trust.

How its absence
has a seductive power

to harm tender things,
forcing wrinkles to open

so words may die
peacefully under the skin.

All it takes is a face.
I am not the face.


Daniel Edward Moore lives in Washington on Whidbey Island. His work is forthcoming in I-70 Review, Passengers Journal, Watershed Review, Flint Hills Review, Sugar House Review, The Main Street Rag Magazine and Impossible Archetype. His book “Waxing the Dents,” is from Brick Road Poetry Press.