On June 13th of this year, Omaha resident Jason Jolkowski will have been missing twenty long years. That 19-year-old man who vanished in 2001, a few days before summer and about two weeks before his twentieth birthday, is now either a 39-year-old man, on the cusp of middle age, or he is beyond summers and birthdays altogether.

I won’t rehash the details of his disappearance since you can read a fantastically concise summary of that written by author Jenn Baxter.

I think it’s safe to say that virtually everyone who reads about this tragic disappearance finds it baffling. It seems…

Phil had been everything to her: husband, best friend, a nurturing father to their two children and a great provider. Suddenly losing him after thirty-two years of marriage left Joan reeling. It’s not as though she had ever been truly stable. But that was another great thing about Phil. He had stood by his wife through the worst of it. Phil had always been the most understanding spouse when it came to Joan’s dream anxiety disorder. She had slid through a few good periods, but it was rare that she could make it a full year without the attacks of…

The day
has no visible stem
like any flower
I know,
and yet it blooms.

The petals
are hours,
minutes, even seconds
have wild

and yet
they burn
like no flower…

She knew it wasn’t the wisest idea to drive out a few hours after midnight to get her laundry done. But dammit if her ginger cat King Pong hadn’t climbed atop a full basket of laundry and from some unfathomable and maddening motive pissed on her clothes. The apartment manager had promised she would have the basement washer on the fritz fixed by Friday, but really, who could wait. Those clothes needed the salvation of laundry detergent now.

She pulled up to the laundromat and was happy to see it was completely empty. Or so she thought at first. She…

Sean Verbinski was a shitty guy who had burned through a baker’s dozen of shitty jobs by the time he was twenty-three. Because he was young, enjoyed the party lifestyle, was obstinately undereducated and still lived with his parents, the vocational washout situation was not really surprising to anyone. And the young man’s status was not likely to change anytime soon since his motivation was nil. Sean’s hobbies were sleep, masturbation and more sleep. …

Oh, the walking night…
the dark leaves play at frottage
over heads narrower and brighter than ours
on the inside. An apology spreads its wings
in the darkness above us. She flies away…

The poet died on January 12th the age of moonlight.
Humans are outnumbered by shadows at least two-to-one
on this planet. Substanceless siblings do strange, slow waltzes
around us, day and night…

I am afraid but very
much like a river
of newspaper in a dream;
the drip you hear when
it rains may be inside,
holding on to the sliver
of moon while driving;
spring crocus not cold

Oh, to be like
the rolling stone
and have so many backs
you cannot choose
where to sleep
and with what
posing as who.

We don’t miss
the shiny parts
of the stone

stolen by time.
We enjoy the soft moss
catching our reconfigured

backs and love
even the cracks through
us, the wabi-sabi

William Keckler

Writer, visual artist. Books include Sanskrit of the Body, which won in the U.S. National Poetry Series (Penguin). https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/532348.

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