Three Poems by Torben Robertson

Selective History

The poem as flue, the past as fumes
—whistling—passes through.

In changing state from flammable
to gas, what’s overlooked?

—what equally deserved events
does this ash-cloud occlude?

Why Your Voice Sounds so Bad Recorded

The singer hears their voice played back:
I hate the way it sounds!

They write an instrumental:
Let me hear a voice—but not my own!

For what have I to say that’s not
preferably expressed—
in the impersonality
of tone tone semitone

After the Card Trick

So let these cards like petals fall
and atomize again;

even Heaven shall, like them,
eventually end;

& don’t lament their paling tho
they took all-time to make;

like the temporary flourish
they were made for making’s sake.

Torben Robertson started writing poetry as an adult, and must therefore take full responsibility for his mistake. His poems have appeared in The Maynard (forthcoming), long con magazine, BAD NUDES, Hart House Review, & The Trinity Review. He lives in Toronto.

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