Flapper Press Poetry Café: The Poetry of Carson Kearns

Updated: Jul 19

By Annie Newcomer:


The Flapper Press Poetry Café presents the work of poets from around the globe. This week, we present the intimate poems of Carson Kearns.


We reached out to ask about the inspirations and influences that spark the poet's muse and to find out more about the mysterious Carson Kearns, and it turns out that "Carson Kearns" is a pseudonym. The author prefers to remain anonymous; however, their background reflects the love and warmth of a large family where love was openly expressed and felt.


From Carson Kearns:

Money was tight, which meant that entertainment revolved around family gatherings, music, songs around the piano, the ritual of radio serials, and the knowledge that one was loved unconditionally and that anything in life was possible with hard work and a positive outlook. A deep love of poetry, literature, and history was interrupted by the usual (but highly enjoyable) demands of family and professional life. Decades later, the joy of creating stories and poems was rediscovered—a joy that flows from the release of too-long-contained creative energy.


AN: What brought you to poetry? Why do you write it?


CK: I have always loved words and the music of words. In my late teenage years and my early 20s, I loved the rhythms and onomatopoeia of Edgar Allan Poe, Gerard Manly Hopkins (“I saw this morning, morning’s minion”), Blake, Milton, etc., and then the purity and clarity of various Japanese poets and, much later (thanks to Elizabeth Gracen), the extraordinary beauty of Rumi. Another major influence on me was the author Dorothy Dunnett and the incredible Lymond Chronicles, set in the mid-sixteenth century. I first came across them in my early teenage years and still love these novels passionately to this day. Its polyglot hero quotes all manner of ancient, Renaissance, and Byzantine poets, and Ms. Dunnett’s love of portrait painting translates into some of the most powerful word descriptions you will find in literature.


AN: What do you hope people come away with from reading your poems?


CK: I would love people to be reminded of what a treasure trove we have in the English language and how thoughtful combinations of words can convey complexity without sacrificing simplicity of structure and form.

The poems were written as part of a series of Fanfic called "Lost in the Loving," reflecting the troubles and tragedies that haunted two of the main characters. Ironically, they were prescient in that my own relationship of some 33 years ended very suddenly and unexpectedly quite soon after these poems were written, and they came to reflect my own sorrow and grief at the loss of a companion who had been such a stalwart in my heart and life. Looking back almost 20 years later, I think I must have known at a deep level that our journey was coming to an end, and the poems reflect that premonition.




#1 I COVET YOU


Tenant of my nights and days I covet you the sleek fine featured form of you… the warmth of you the siren searing sex of you… the feel of you the luscious lusting line of you… the taste of you I covet you…

#2 ON LIGHTING YOU HOME…

What gain is there, what gain in reaching out to feel Your warmth, your face?

What pain is there to bear in holding fast to me Your form and grace?

I roll into the place where last your body lay Beneath my own… I fantasize you here, I yearn to hear your sighs Your sated groan…

I gently press my face onto your pillow slip - I breathe you in… I hold you fast, forever held inside myself, Inside my skin…

My fingers trace the place where last you lay your head - I trace your pain… I leave the slip unwashed, our sheets a scented shroud To love, in vain…

Is it so wrong to long for scents that flavor still your passing through? To covet still those nights and wondrous days of love When first we knew -

When loving only me you lay, replete a while, Inside my soul… Please know, the candle still burns bright, to light you home - and make us whole…

#3 I SAW YOUR FACE


I watched a young man spinning on the ice. He spun such magic, spun such surreal sights - and then he slowed, and bowed his head to me,

then slowly he looked up, into my eyes

And as I watched, imprinted on that place

I saw your face…

You smiled and gathered up your warrior grace and spun your sun-drenched body in the cold - you torched my soul...and as my tears began you bowed - he bowed - and breathing ghosted snow you spun in circles, spun my soul away.

I quietly wept...

Your going left me shards of bloodied ice embedded in my lungs, and through my heart. The ice moves slowly through my blood, and pools in all the silences your leaving left. I never look at ice or skates these days -

They shred my soul.


#4 WHO LOVES AND YEARN


You turn towards the man who loves and yearns Who fuels your heart and soul and quietly burns. And lights the dreary dark of empty space Who found and put your heart into that place.


#5 LARGER THAN MY LIFE

You were larger than my life and all that I was, and felt required more space, to move, to breathe,

…to live.

I hid inside your clothes, I burrowed deep and wandered freely on the plains and through the open spaces of your heart your presence used to leave me boneless, strewn across your living heart and hearth

And pasted to the insides of your soul.

#6 SURRENDERING All sense senses and sensibility. all feelings felt. all yearnings ever yearned all burnings burned all learnings ever learned


#7 TEA HAIKU


eggshell thin, our cups protect jasmine scented needs. Sip slowly and sigh.... Smiling you pour tea. "Sugar?" you ask, passing me a cup of your desire.

Steam rises and scents hovering wings of desire - fly closer, shy one.

Snowflakes dance and melt above the steam of your cup. I rise to join them.

Steam amidst the snow. Tasting cold and bitter brew - I seek scents of hope.

My cup sits empty. Eyes engaging, your hand pours. Am I worth your best?

The steamed brew you served - tempting. Put aside, leaves begin to sink.


Annie Newcomer teaches poetry classes at the University of Kansas Medical Center's Turning Pointa place for hope and healing for people suffering with chronic health problems. Her North Stars series shares interviews with poets and writers and Annie's own experiences through writing.


Annie is also helms the Flapper Press Poetry Café—dedicated to celebrating poets from around the world and to encouraging everyone to write poetry!


FlapperPress launches the Flapper Press Poetry Café.

Presenting a wide range of poetry with a mission to promote a love and understanding of poetry for all. We welcome submissions for compelling poetry and look forward to publishing and supporting your creative endeavors. Submissions may also be considered for the Pushcart Prize.


Submission Guidelines:

1. Share at least three (3) poems

2. Include a short bio of 50–100 words, written in the third person.

(Plus any website and links.)

3. Share a brief backstory on each submitted poem

4. Submit an Author's photo and any images you want to include with the poems

5. Send all submissions and questions to: info@flapperpress.com