Adam Strauss

Adam Strauss' work has appeared in Drunken Boat, Softblow, Shampoo, Z O N E, and Fence. He currently lives in Las Vegas, Nevada.


Because I am
Obsessed by John
Ashbery who is so glam
But also homespun like “‘hon’”
Honeying a corridor
In an opera house or a lawn
On which nature would do a poor
Comparison next to this neon
Green flamingo where here, there, sore
Spots of pink show through
Flinging me to a place which couldn’t be more
To my liking than if this blue
Were the exact—like a spore—
Hue Paul Cezanne knew
Though the wine lists everywhere
Are barely fit for me and, certainly, not you—
With your nose for rivers, a pair
Of nostrils in whose noble view
Bordeaux can air
Its specifics which any sensible
Person would need a label to know and wouldn’t care
If there were no label, as soul
Frames vision once you dare
Heat as fittest signal
For your nerves to not stay away.


I, like my
Animal the wombat, shy
Away from a flower
Garden if there’s fruit
Growing elsewhere and though I don’t tower
Over much but a myriad critters I suit
Living to a T and after your shower—
Secure it’s time for not giving a hoot—
You brew oolong, pour
Yourself a cute
Cup, look out the window till you can ignore
What’s happening: you’re at the square root
Of seeing and then a car-door
Slams—the reverie is
Over but, dear now, “as full as store”
Remains and an emphasis
Falls and the more
It does, Memphis, its down-home Egyptian way, makes us miss
That profound
We used to count
As true thus silence eclipses
Speech—as sound as it’s said to be.


Responsibility, it seems,
Is for the birds,
Who don’t in my wildest dreams
Do anything but work hard to stay alive; words
Are easy pickings compared
With eating enough insects; in a great dream thirds
Of everything is enough good; waking I’m spared
Such modesty; extravagance blizzards—
What would happen if one day the world dared
To do without a moon:
Would the tides be prepared?
On a dune,
With sun already having glared,
In a pitch which never becomes a tune,
I’ll scrawl
Ciphers unless it’s later than soon
Here will be under sea; might all
Be clearer there, where noon
Sun requires a new sense and back on land small
Talk resumes its course.