DOG WHISTLE POLITICS
Dog Whistle Politics
Author: Michael Paul
Genre: Poetry, Trade Paper, 6X9
Publisher: Lummox Press (PO Box 5301 San Pedro, CA 90733-5301) www.lummoxpress.com
Publishing Date: Feb. 2010
Retail: $15 + shipping
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Michael Paul is a scout, his ear not only to the ground for distant hooves, but to the bark for the small things thriving in wood; to the air for birdsong, and to the walls of our love, the nautilus of our hearts. - Jamie O’Halloran
"…intricate, exquisitely lyrical
poetry laden with original imagery and references that cut straight to
The Orange County Weekly (CA)
Everything Michael places on his canvas or in a poem—line, color, the picture
plane itself—shudders, sways, and wriggles with meaning, but he imposes no
external meaning on anything he depicts. There are no cheap tricks with shadows
or frequencies of colored dots or hidden breasts in the fading tulips. His eyes
and ears are organs of such accuracy and certainty that he draws meaning out of
its textual hiding places and allows it to stand alone, fully revealed...
Amelie Frank (from the introduction)
Here are a few poems from this volume...
Dog Whistle Politics
Ladies and Gentlemen our presentation
will begin promptly at the equinox
or solar eclipse,
which ever occurs first. Meanwhile,
our lovely attendants shall attempt to guess
your exact atomic weight.
Place your wagers, and remember, it’s all for charity.
We are, it should come as no surprise, permeable
membranes, permitting entrance if presented
hospital flowers, semi-wilted, in a rusted
George Washington plug tobacco tin.
That last bouquet was useless, got no one absolutely no where.
We request your quiet attention; this is
after all a one-way valve, (unless we specify otherwise),
only having traffic with:
spiritual types of all stripes,
arty-farty boho folks, and faithless dogs
At our intermission we shall be serving complimentary hors d’oeuvres –
grist for the mill,
(made from actual fingers!),
and a quaint little pasta
with a piquant sauce
from your deepest fears.
In my sister’s dream redemption comes
in the form of a pick-up truck.
In mine, my father, dead for decades,
drives a yellow bus to the shore
where bilingual fish explain
all secret knowledge.
In mother’s dream Christ appeared to her
after the manner of Yahweh disclosing
his backside to Moses,
but it didn’t involve vehicles –
just a tree, a red flannel shirt,
and dungarees. Cars are omens
in my wife’s dreams; their portent
depending upon make, model, mileage,
Kelly Blue Book value, but above all –
who is behind the wheel of this latest model
augury? Who drives my sister’s pick-up
while she pulls the walking wounded
over the tailgate into safety?
And who could possibly imagine my surprise
when the folding door hissed open
in my dream, and the driver of the bus
was my dad, finally come to take me
to the place where the real answers are.