Five Poems by Peter N. Sherburn-Zimmer

By  | March 1, 2015 | 2 Comments | Filed under: Poetry

Daniel Heffez photo of Peter Sherburn-Zimmer
Photo courtesy of Daniel Heffez


Emily, Your Voice

We came to the edge of the river –
Something we never thought.
I came, it still was hidden,
There by the failed bramble –
Something I never heard.
Too much the forgotten sun
Inspiring hallucinations,
Chartreuse and weakened.

With something lost in my turn,
As if you’d lost your way,
Before I told my tale –
We take what we can get
Before the current passes us,
Open to what will come
And give up to what is –
That shadow I emulate!



What’s Left?

Giving up dream before the dawn
Before I kindle my first attempt at sight,
I’d give you what the evening left unheard —
The glowing words I left in deepest sleep.
Yet every word’s a contradiction now,
A secret told to only one who waits–
But a willow is a morning’s tax,
Remands the dew to wishful after-sleep.
To clean the wakefulness of promise,
Remainder what I’d lost a day ago
And find what I had given up —
Awake or asleep I am deceived:
I go where I may stay
And take myself from promise’s decay.




In the halls of madness
In the world of toys
It’s not always good
When its
Not always
Bad when
I hear the airplanes
When I think I’m alone
I’m hearing the music
Play backwards
Through the transcript
Losing the language again
The new one
The first one
The one I speak to myself…
Speaks without me…
I get to start over,
Every day.



An Aftersong: Continuity

A random, never-to-be-repeated event –
Once in a while –
In my dreams –
I can’t remember.

The light from the window
In the early afternoon –
Before the world begins
To enter my life.

Sleep and the desire for sleep
Intersperse phonetic resonances
With a delight
At not feeling a thing.




I was watching the sea
Still itself
Beneath the red evening sun.

The day came back to itself:
The sound below the night
Became myself breathing.

The world became

The wave of the moment
Crowded out
My revelry.

And I became
A piece of the world
Displacing itself.




Peter N. Sherburn-Zimmer is a slum kid with a Ph.D., retired philosopher… in San Francisco this time since ’93, 1st time ’67; 1st poem, 1963… some degrees. Some friends. 3 grown children. 2 poetry books from H.D. Moe’s Beatitude Press, [Selected Poems, 2004-1005 and Approximations] and Poetry: Open to Interpretation [on Wallace Stevens’ poetry]. Published in anthologies and broadsides by Henry A. Weiner, Rothenberg [Jerome], Vince Storti, Ronald Sauer & Rebecca Peters, Fanny Renoir, Neeli Cherkovski, Sarah Page & Steven Grey, Friends of the SF Public Library and some College and online magazines. Still likes to write, listen to his friends and read… and talk to people on the bus.




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2 Responses to Five Poems by Peter N. Sherburn-Zimmer

  1. Pingback: Fruita Pulp: Issue #8 March/April | Fruita Pulp

  2. David Anthony Martin March 2, 2015 at 9:26 pm

    Truly enjoyed these poems, most especially Emily, Your Voice. Wonderful to discover a new poet, one who has been around for sometime and to whom poetry is not something new.

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