The man saw fog
swallowing the top
of every building
that made up downtown.
He walked up
the long hill
and looked back—
A city in eiderdown.
Feeling a lack
of city, missing buildings,
he closed a tiny door
on the gift-wrapped town.
Somewhere he knows fog
will melt and soft-topped
monuments will show up.
The sky goes from gray to black.
A Secret Craft
The only time to tune foghorns
is when you can’t see them, when mist
will lick fingers and lashes form
prisms, breaking light. You exist—
a shadow cast by foreign storms—
your ears cold but soft as the fist
that taps this bell up. That one lists
to starboard—twist it hard a-port—
the only way. The tunes foghorns
sing can’t be seen, just felt through mist.
Mark J. Mitchell’s latest novel, The Magic War just appeared from Loose Leaves Publishing. He studied writing at UC Santa Cruz under Raymond Carver and George Hitchcock. His work has appeared in the several anthologies and hundreds of periodicals. Three of his chapbooks— Three Visitors, Lent, 1999, and Artifacts and Relics—and the novel, Knight Prisoner are available through Amazon and Barnes and Noble.. He lives with his wife Joan Juster and makes a living pointing out pretty things in San Francisco.