Literary Yard

Search for meaning

‘Infinite Blue’ and other poems

By: T.F. Jennings

Infinite Blue

I don’t understand any of it.
The moon, the ocean, this spinning rock. You name it.

We sit overlooking the coastline high up on a knoll
that was made seemingly just for us.

The sun hangs in its usual moorings
like an ornate figurehead spilling its soupy light

into the water below. A spiral of spindrift
clouds lay anchored around the orb

tossing in the breeze like buoys.
All afternoon we ebbed and flowed

like the lungs of the tide —
expanding and contracting,

scored by the low roar of waves
exploding on the shore.

Far off in the distance
where the sky and ocean blur into one;

a soft sapphire flame paints the horizon line.
It is easy to get lost in the infinite blue,

and the longer we stared the more difficult it was to see
how all this could be ours. The wind begins

whipping westerly; its far-reaching tentacles
stinging our cheeks. Eventually we float —

unbridled as jellyfish
with our backs against the gale

and drift toward the trailhead;
our hands carved together like the frame of a ship.


I used to think of the sun as merely
rising and falling, something like

a teeter totter. The sun weighing down
one side, the moon the other.

A single unseen pivot
somewhere near the midpoint,

maybe off the Turquoise Coast
or anchored deep in the briny Atlantic.

But maybe it’s really more like
an enormous carnival light

wired in the firmament;
an invisible pull chain tethered

to this tilt-a-whirl
that could spin off its axle

at any second. Scattering light.
Burning lilac and gold,

bending and whirling at
1,000 miles an hour

as we spin eastward, a flash mob of shadows
shooting across the rust-stained horizon

like flitting starlings webbed in the gloaming,
our arms outstretched to the sky.

Carnival After Hours

The moon is a funhouse mirror
bending strangely shaped spindles
of artificially buttered light.

One fiberglass horse left chasing its tail,
impaled by an ornamental spear
shooting up through its painted withers —

compulsively; pouncing up, plunging down,
in a perpetual state of fight or flight.
A wounded song waltzes

through a blown-out speaker
and in the puddled yellow light
clowns begin removing their smiles.

Hangdog Moon

in a starless vault
atop its throneless
midnight velvet cushion.
Concealed in the gray sagging robe
of its own shadow. Coercing
the tide to dance
a persistent
and primitive waltz. Claiming
the crown of the sun
in spilt milk reflections.

The Muse, The Butcher

I gather my ideas
and place them
tenderly at her feet
like a fresh kill.
Ink and bone.
Future and flesh.
She tears at the skin
hollowing the bones;
a wild butcher
cutting away the meat.
She works against the grain,
shortening the muscle fibers.
Slicing thinly and methodically
while the juices ooze
into a syrupy puddle.
Then sliding across
the makeshift slaughterhouse,
she hands me a small slab
and absconds with the ravaged remains.
I clutch the viscid gift
like a wounded hatchling
and begin stitching
it into song.


T.F. Jennings is the pseudonym of producer, songwriter, media music composer, and poet, Tyler Fortier. Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Fortier spent years performing under his own name sharing the stage with Frazey Ford, Dave Barnes, David Dondero, Matt Pond PA, and more. He has produced recordings for the likes of Jeffrey Martin, Anna Tivel, and Beth Wood, and as a media music composer his music has been placed all over the world. His debut EP In the Teeth of the Night is due out April 30th, 2024. Fortier lives in Eugene, Oregon with his wife and two children.

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