The Complete Works of Thales and Miletus by Mark J. Mitchell

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The Complete Works of Thales and Miletus by Mark J. Mitchell
Illustration by Sue Babcock

His feet stayed damp all day. The slow, long walk
up river, town spreading out. Two lodestones
gripped tight. He tried wrapping them in dry stalks
from above the banks. The rocks clicked. Alone,
they meant nothing, but they wanted to talk
to each other. Still damp. He cursed all gods,
any of them. He wondered—do these rocks
have souls? Are they in love? It can’t be known—
He knew things. He told armies when the sun
would vanish. He knew all about olives.
But lodestones—that study had just begun.
Sweat on his neck. Damp feet. Many things live—
everything’s water. There are many gods.
He wrote that down. He knew his work was done.


BIO: 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. A new collection is due out in December from Cherry Grove.
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: