Riverside Park

Rain washed railings prop me up
an audience of moored boats
wriggle in their seats

From a quiet river rostrum
I address a crowd
of broken rotting poles

All stand at miserable attention
waiting for a time when
I am gone and they may rest

But they will indulge me a while
as they do their drifting brothers
dislodged from earth upstream

Who must be wide-ranging travelers
to have strayed so far from home
they are here now, so I greet them

What other strangers gather to hear
my silent address to water
bottles, pebbles, an old red balloon

Come one, come all, to our merry feast
furnished by sun, wind, rain
concrete settles underfoot, as I uncap my pen.


Alex Parrish is a founding editor of Fire Ring Voices, an anthology of poetry and prose by male writers. He has studied writing, history, and classics at various institutions, including Oxford’s Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, The Graduate Center (CUNY), Bemidji State University,and The University Minnesota. He recently presented as a finalist in the Global Shakespeare Project.