Creative Spotlight: “Xerox Valley” by Jacob Isaacs

Happy spring (?) term! This week, the Miscellany’s creative spotlight is on a poem by Jacob Isaacs (’20). Jacob is an English major from San Jose, California, whose favorite books are Catch-22, Invisible Man, and White Teeth. Thanks to Jacob for sharing his work with us – check it out below!

Xerox Valley

In the glimmering hills
Above the ashcoated trees
On a winding dirt road
Far from the brilliant plastic martyrs
Who claw their way through
The bloodless corps of Xerox valley,
Who never sleep but dream below, forever

Past an army surplus sign
That says
No entry,

Nestled there among the oaks
And lichened boulders
And weeping moss
Embraced by futile history
Is a clearing
Big as a parking lot
Where you could idle at peace

And if one day
The knives of cutthroat eyes and tongues
Make drizzle in your soul,

Join me in the clearing
Where the wind whining green pangs of lust
From the cities of the plain
Is too lost in the maze
Of boxes and of questions big and small they have made
To snatch your pocketbook

And then, looking up,
Away from the haze of urban truth
Where cars still screech and no one looks,

The winter blanket still around your neck,
Your ears prickle at the sky,
And just beyond the stiff fluorescent veil
You can hear the hidden stars.

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