Image by Khamkéo Vilaysing


the madrigal, volume iii

Andalusian Ghazal

by mark j. mitchell, after Abu Baker al-Turƫushi, 1059-1126

I examine the sky each night—your

mark spreads everywhere. Which bright star is yours?

Crowds of travelers pass my door all the time.
I breathe them deep, in case they might smell of you.

When hot winds blow, I turn my face straight

into its force, feeling those flights of yours.

Listening to caravan songs, I sit quiet,
sad. Strange poets, somewhere, must write of you.

I study each face, in every kind of light,

but there lives no beauty as bright as yours.

Mark J. Mitchell was born in Chicago and grew up in southern California. His latest poetry collection, Roshi San Francisco, was just published by Norfolk Publishing. Starting from Tu Fu   was recently published by Encircle Publications. He is very fond of baseball, Louis Aragon, Miles Davis, Kafka and Dante. He lives in San Francisco with his wife, the activist and documentarian, Joan Juster where he made his marginal living pointing out pretty things. Now, like everyone else, he’s unemployed. He has published 2 novels and three chapbooks and two full length collections so far. Titles on request. A meager online presence can be found at A primitive web site now exists: I sometimes tweet @Mark J Mitchell_Writer