I browse through the latest issue
of the pretentious poetry journal
find the vast majority of poems
so I move on
and glance at photos
of the featured
"My God, I've been mistaken.
This must be a magazine printing
the last poems of dying patients.
faces express such despair
and a kind of insane rage.
I must pray for them."
But returning to the cover
it is indeed the latest issue
of the condescending poetry journal
and then of course
comes the realization
the academic elite
are fooling no one but themselves
and that their misery
is a wonderful punishment
god awful musings
as they remain single-handedly
responsible for the nation
refusing to read poetry anymore.
This Is Not Poetry
The poet’s desk was a kind of
a thing frozen, like an open wardrobe
at the foot of Vesuvius.
It seemed that he had stepped out to
make some copies,
and in leaning over the flash of the
decided that he could never return
Room 652. Maybe he thought, in that moment, lit up
by the bulbs beneath the glass surface,
of the bottles of aspirin,
Excedrin, Tylenol, half empty, tossed
in various drawers,
or the jagged half of his American
buried beneath the dozens of pens,
caps all marred with incisor dents.
Maybe it wasn’t a Xerox flash
Maybe it was a long time coming.
Maybe he was tired of the rusty Colgate
can and plastic
razors piling up beneath decades of
the dirty forks from home smudging
the fluorescent lighting, the endless
announcing the new Attendance Policy,
the Add/Drop deadline.
And what if it was ennui? What if it was finding himself staring
at a wind-up Toy airplane, or mini
and thinking to himself, This is not poetry.
Letter of Johnny Appleseed
had to write you because i can’t find the sun!
no where to be found, the dawn left last
to get some steak & eggs at little gus café &
came back. i lost the sun b! i lost the sun.
is here & it’s my fault & no more
b & no more drunken cider binges b & no
politics b & no more sex b & no more green
& blue collar sweat & noontime rides & no
b b. no more me b! what am i going to do b?
kill myself b. hope you understand, tell
the serpent can have that bitch. i can’t live
the sun b. good-bye forever. sorry.
because of the way my body rises
to meet you, I’d take you back
because of the places my pride has
I’d take you back
because of the strength I never had
I’d welcome you open
because of the skin I don’t own
I’d tender you again
because of the weather, the wind, and
all but abandoned
save for flowering
graffiti. radio wafts,
settling like cinders
on the street below.
some high open window
Mozart, only rooftop
pigeons know for sure.
a stunted bush, exhausted
of threadbare grass.
in the corner, a poor excuse
for a tree -waxed, wan-
as if carried out
exposed to sun
for the very first time.
an old man tries
to soak up what's left
of the shade,
the color of earth,
with his brown paper bag.