Three Poems by Caleb Michael Sarvis | Micro-Poetry | #thesideshow

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swampy conjunction

the frogs will not stay out of my house. i find them
on the wall, in the blinds, between the cushions, asleep
in glassware, in the fridge, stuck in prescription bottles,
controlling the roku remote. we use paper plates and plastic
bowls to capture them, release them into the yard. i imagine
they are attracted to the cumulonimbus dragonflies hovering
near our ceiling, above the toilets, in front the television.
some of them bang their heads against the sliding glass
door until they’re dead, but the frogs don’t seem as interested
in them. we used to use tongs to remove the dragonflies, to avoid
breaking their wings, but now we let them be. i knew an old lady
who filled up her house with an ecosystem, co-existed
with the undesirables. she lived until she was four hundred
and seven. when asked how she lived so long, she credited bourbon
and one scoop of cookie dough. i’m lactose intolerant, but i follow
directions well. a dragonfly tastes my bourbon, flies into the sliding
glass door. a frog that’s more of a bookend snatches the dragonfly
with its tongue from a shelf before the fly can hit the glass again.




closing my eyes is a trust-fall with my imagination

calvin doesn’t double-take
when hobbes suggests absurdity
is the evolutionary remedy
for fear of the unknown.

calvin doesn’t click his heels
when hobbes critiques the whims
of his intellectual band aids,
the preservation of his empathy.

calvin doesn’t roll a snowman
because frosty shines from a box
on mute in an empty living room,
soggy bowl of sugar bombs on the rug.

he’s surreal for the sake of economy,
toeing the tightrope between
pragmatism and

a magnet with negating ends
attracts itself into balance,
into progress,
into survival.

calvin doesn’t turn stupendous
for the sake of heroism.
he soars into battle
with monsters few can see.

it’s a matter of extinction,
of engaging an ever-expanding end.



one like equals

i sent a friend request to this
dead guy today. saw someone
tag him in a sad status,
despondent emoji,
i clicked on his name.
he presented himself
cool enough.
white sox cap, large beard.
if he accepts, we can baseball and beer.

this isn’t the first time
i’ve friend requested the dead,
this isn’t the first time
the dead ignored my advances.
i expect one day, lit with likes,
the internet will crack,
and the dead and i
will trade emails,
scribble over manuscripts.




About the Author

Caleb Michael Sarvis is a writer from Jacksonville, Florida. He is the fiction editor for Bridge Eight Literary Magazine and received his MFA from the University of Tampa. His work has been featured in or is forthcoming from Hobart, Split Lip Magazine,  Barrelhouse, Fjords Review, Literary Orphans, Panhandler Magazine, Flock,  The Molotov Cocktail, Carbon Culture Review, Atlas and Alice, Oyster River Pages, and others.