“Miasma” by Jake Thomas Shaw

Bad air hangs over Olympia.
Be it from the lake,
the waterfront,
the alleys,
uptown,
or on the hill
where law claims capitol.

There lives a wraith somewhere.
It manifests to infect newbloods
with its promise of risk, how it
renders silent the cacophonous mist
that is each participant in the
mysticism and illusion of this
such wondrous existence.
The spirit of the city.
How free it flies.
How it wears no guise.
How it clouds and drowns
the weak exposed to it.
How it galvanizes and uplifts
the fortunate, moonlit.
Eidolon hidden among
throngs of crowds,
sights and sounds
smoldering.
Even in a new age
its specter
pulls
the same old way.
Still possesses everything
in a fog of smoke and words
that murmur as you pass by
with silhouette’s eyes fixed,
each narrow iris, like spies
staring through space and time.
You enter downtown to leave,
but its air never ceases to be
as you continue to breathe it in
many realities after leaving.
Miasma like incense in your
plague
Jake Thomas Shaw is the host of Radio Reality City, a guerrilla publication born out of Puyallup, Washington and heads his own self-published works. Shaw works with poetry when it comes to the writing sphere, and print out an annual collection, with this year’s being Abandon Ship, which you can get at King’s Books in Tacoma! Most of his poetry is derived from autumn, of course, but more importantly he tries to get at the meta of why autumn is a source of such inspiration. This leads down dark alleyways in Olympia, bright beaches in Federal Way, and he tries to find meaning in every scrap of gravel. Shaw currently resides in Puyallup, where he has been for six years, and is set to head upwards to the Art Institute of Seattle for a degree in Digital Film this coming winter.