This Is For
John Martin



all the small butterflies, yellow and white,

that met my truck mid-flutter as I drove

the hundred miles to buy a piece of this earth

today, one not a lot bigger than a butterfly


when you really think about it. I guess

I put an end to whatever you were doing.

Understand, I had to wait nervously

for the notary, so she could witness us


(my lawful wife and I) scribbling our small

names on some paper, so I could then drive

all that to the place where they move things

overnight from here to there -


because getting things done right now

is important. Because so many other

things are waiting to happen in their turn.

Happen now. Now, as you beat your wings


and search for that mate or meal or leaf

to live on. I’m sure it was important

to you. Don’t for one minute think that I

don’t appreciate that. I do. But, so many


arrangements had been made, so much

depended on me getting those papers where

they belonged with all the right signatures. I

know you understand. How crazy, huh?




John Martin's first full length poetry collection, Hold This, was published by Concrete Wolf Press in 2017. He is also the author of the chapbook The Nick Of Time (Iota Press, 2006). He lives and works in Summer Lake, Oregon.