By Micah Ballard b. 1975 Micah Ballard
I see into them
as they see out of me
& dissolve the wattage
to avoid future legends
young pharaohs on Fillmore cracking dutches
it is a lonely frontier by contrast
forgotten game skulking around
big hearts, small temper
thine absence overflows
thine presence undoes
do not attempt to circle the inferno
a tremor in the throne
is a tremor in the throne

Micah Ballard, "Wayfaring" from Waifs and Strays, City Lights Spotlight No. 6. Copyright © 2011 by Micah Ballard.  Reprinted by permission of City Lights Books.

Source: Waifs and Strays (City Lights Books, 2011)

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Micah Ballard b. 1975


Subjects Living, The Mind, Social Commentaries, Cities & Urban Life, Popular Culture

Poetic Terms Free Verse

 Micah  Ballard


Poet Micah Ballard was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and earned an MA and MFA from the New College of California. He studied with poet Joanne Kyger and has written about John Wieners; the influence of the San Francisco Renaissance poets can be seen in his work. He has published a number of chapbooks, including Absinthian Journal (2002), Bettina Coffin (2003), In the Kindness of Night (2003), Evangeline Downs (2006), and Poems . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, The Mind, Social Commentaries, Cities & Urban Life, Popular Culture


Poetic Terms Free Verse

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.