by Joseph Chaney

We speak of what we’ve “always” liked, what we’ve
“always” done or thought or wished, as if there’d
always been an us—as if I have been
what I am now always, my sight the eye
of Memory itself.  Of course, we mean
a time before we were aware that we
had such thoughts, such feelings and tastes, when we
weren’t yet ourselves as we now know ourselves.
But something of that daydream thought remains
true, trapping us in the primeval world.
Now time runs backwards, each thought flings open
all doors again down the halls of childhood
in the endless house above the water.
The great storm crashes against the windows.

by Joseph Chaney

What astronomers call the moon’s “far side”—
pocked with craters, a ruined ugliness
no one imagined before space travel—
is like that aunt you’ve only heard about
who lives in Indonesia and doesn’t even
send birthday cards or photos of herself.
The familiar side shines like a burnished
skull, a smiling uncle gazing at you
from a chilly height because he has his
own life going on for a few more years,
his private torments. He’s always around—
too often maybe. You’ve never asked Mom
why some nights he sits with his dome light on
an hour or more before driving home.


Joseph Chaney is publisher of Wolfson Press at Indiana
University South Bend.  He teaches English literature and
writing.  His poetry has appeared in many journals including
Prairie Schooner, Poem, Crazyhorse, and, most recently,
Stoneboat, Spillway, and the Fall 2014 issue of the Apple
Valley Review
.  His narrative poem “Their First Road Trip”
is a finalist for the Dogwood Prize and will appear in the
2017 issue of
Dogwood: A Journal of Poetry and Prose.   

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Apple Valley Review:
A Journal of Contemporary

ISSN 1931-3888

Volume 12, Number 1
(Spring 2017)

Copyright © 2017
by Leah Browning, Editor.  

All future rights to material
published in the
Valley Review
are retained
by the individual authors
and artists.