Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Our Little Furry Monsters

Well, yes, there could be little furry monsters
In local garbage cans. They might be trying
Cumbersome alphabets with broken twigs.
They could be adding 1 plus none plus none.
Primary colors, cunning speech defects,
And shaggy. You would think that they would stink--
Eggshells and tea leaves, vacuum cleaner bags
Filled with hair, dust, grit, gravel, ash, and pebbles.
Leaves, butts, dead flowers, Kleenex wads, and shredded
Stuff. Stuff is the word, the bland adhesive
Which binds us bone to bone, passionate motes,
A minyan for a landfill. Where was I?
Ah, yes, the monster with its glass of milk
And cookie, with endearing mustache crumbs,
Though where the mustache ends and cheek begins
Is mere surmise. He has no bottom half.
Bones, hair, teeth, dolls, eyeglasses, wedding rings.
You wonder that there are so many monsters.
"Mingle," their mothers told them. "Go on, blend."
Monsters among us. Who'd have ever guessed.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

They Flee from Me

And the small birds flee. Me, I lurch
Down the brick path, as though the fence
Were a destination, low church
Of last resort. Sing in past tense,
I warn the high birds on high branches.
They can feel light. I can feel dense
Bricks and palings, boundary chances
To stand firm. And the small birds sing
Inexplicably. See, they search
For song, they say, in everything.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Move along, please. No vampires here.

I hope "The Strain" is a massive failure, no matter how well done it is. I have no animus towards anyone involved, but I'd like to see the whole vampiric enterprise die for at least a generation. Obviously it plucks some sympathetic chord and endlessly fascinates millions; but between the Twilight utes and those walking dead chaps, I'm quite drained. Why are vampires so popular? Why now? It can't all be a metaphor for hedge fund managers.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

What, This City Park?

Potpourri printed this one.

Here is God’s plenty
--Dryden

I watch the garden mythologically,
predator swans beneath the victim trees
whose limbs still twist, the Zoo a generation
of sweat transforming semen. It may be
the tail of the tapir holds statistical
significance, as flexible as a god.

Look at the fountain, all carved heads and mouths
smiling in blindness, O-O’d in stone terror,
or blank, as though anomie were their defense.
The flowers soil themselves with seed: they once
cried to be changed, and now they are, they are.
The coral snake remembers better days

when he swam double-breasted in a rain
of terror. There are peacocks in my path.
Two antelopes who can’t elope because
Jove pinned them in begetting to the sand
until they begged in heat for hooves, they made
story. A bullfinch twitters. From my first

fable up to the present, who has been
transformed by hormones, given plumes, and sent
to brood odd young in armor? Who’s been paid
for charm in stars? Who started school but came
back home a tale of fantasy in feet
some free verse mortal thought too cute to count?

Friday, July 04, 2014

The Desuetude of Mr James

Wry Mr James commits enormities
Of style with style. This late in life he knows
Embonpoint is a structural device,
The close that makes the man--his buttons need
Jumbo's dexterity to finish off.
He calls his flowers flowers: that's enough
For floribundant similarity;
But caution comes in shades, like purple light
Climbing a red-brick garden wall at dusk;
And he sees every tint, Adamic man
Mounting a stair which knows no period,
Only a pause, a lamp lit at each landing.