Spring 2004

Gregory Byrd


Gregory Byrd This marks an author's first online publication Gregory Byrd, a native of the Florida Keys, is a fair carpenter and knows how to cast a mullet net. His work has appeared in such journals as Poet Lore, MacGuffin and Tampa Review (which nominated him for a Pushcart Prize). He has degrees from FSU and UNC-Greensboro and teaches at St. Petersburg College in Clearwater, Florida.
On Being Asked What I Thought Of Neruda's "The Enigmas"

When I read poems like Neruda's "The Enigmas,"
I think I ought to buy lots of woodworking tools
and learn to make cabinets, but then
I meet a cabinet maker who makes joints
that fit together like the sections of an orange,
and then I think to sell my tools and learn to fish,
but then I meet a fisherman who knows the fish-roads
of the sea like creaseworn maps,
so I think of selling my nets, which reminds me
of Neruda's "The Enigmas"
so I stick with poems and remember that some of us
swim among the hundreds of mullets spawning together
on cold grassy flats under a windblown grey sky
and that the great whales that breech far out at sea
and sound the darkest depths of spirit-crushing pressure,
make every small creature that swims and spawns
even in the shallowest water, a worthy archetype.



Gregory Byrd: Poetry
Copyright © 2004 The Cortland Review Issue 26The Cortland Review