Tyler Sheldon

Ghost Story


In the vault of the water
bones have patience
we can only imagine. The tops
of ossified bison teeth are zigs of bone
you will only see if you are lucky.
They hide. You must understand this
to learn the art of their finding.

These teeth, big as palms,
know the texture of small lives
no longer here.
One or two will crop us
on the river, small miracles
of time, and will wait
until you pass them,
looking down at just
the right moment,
pockets empty, eyes
downward in hope.


Bones are mazes
of hollows, small clearings
where old movements
lie dormant. Can you
hear them?

Tyler Robert Sheldon’s newest books are the poetry collection Driving Together (Meadowlark Books, 2018) and the chapbook Consolation Prize (Finishing Line Press, 2018). He received the 2016 Charles E. Walton Essay Award and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry, fiction, and reviews have appeared or are forthcoming in The Los Angeles ReviewThe Midwest Quarterly, Pleiades, QuiddityThe Dead Mule School of Southern LiteratureTinderbox Poetry Journal, and other venues. Sheldon holds an MA in English from Emporia State University and is an MFA candidate at McNeese State University. He lives in Baton Rouge. View his work at TylerRobertSheldon.com.

← Back to Issue 5