“Maddened by Detail”, “Blue is the Night”, and “The Coffee’s Getting Cold”

By Adam Middleton-Watts


Maddened by Detail

there is a solitary moment here

nothing too complex

the sky split by a single bird

white clouds shaped as a ladder

death spread upon the street

under the guise of orange fur

(squirrels still have so much to learn)

the window of a house

not more than a hundred feet away

glinting like an eye

soured by too much light

the heat in here

stirring like the breath

of famished cats

voices are around

inflected faintly

but ears are somewhat distant

to the parade of solitary quiet

this little that seems to go on



is more than enough

for now




Blue is the Night

the music rolls like summer heat

the itchy strings

and thickened laidback words

someone there is smiling

and keeping rhythm along

the hard edge of a faded drum

you can actually hear that smile

along with the shuffling of

worn out shoes tied

with laces thin as smoke

and the dry snap of old fingers

holding a beat that belongs

somewhere in a well known place

where flesh is pressing flesh

and the joy there found

skillfully vocalized

there is resplendence

in the brilliant curve of a

firm warm hip and a delicate

curl of sweet smelling hair

that perfect dig of fingernail

the naming of a single name

carrying more worth

than twenty years of wonder


The Coffee’s Getting Cold

somehow I’m inclined to address the trivial

coffee cooling in the base of a cup

horns on the radio

a life that seems to have unraveled

much like the weatherworn sail

of a long abandoned vessel

where the crew

left land clueless

and ill-prepared

not caring for supplies

or a determined destination

the coffee cools further

and I lack the ability to contract

a single muscle

there shall be no motion for a while

nothing more than thought

and the cave of lungs


far better poems

have been found



silent on the



Adam Middleton-Watts is an oddball British expat writing from the flatlands of South Dakota. When he’s not dissolving in the midst of a savage summer or fattening up for the next brutal winter, he’s writing poems and stories on the backs of unpaid utility bills and drinking too much dark ale. He has had words printed in many a magazine, and can tell a bison from a handsaw.