Friday, November 17, 2017


Before committing his more serious sins
Ahashueros would loudly bid his soul
To go bide elsewhere for a time
Lest it be offended or incur some stain.
Who disobeys the King? The poor thing
Would slip past the soldiers at the gate
And visit with the bathhouse ghosts
From whom he learned to gamble --
At which he became surprisingly good --
And to swear, unconvincingly.

Thursday, November 16, 2017


No wind; a few branches shift
Perhaps the tree dreams badly or
Wants me to think a breeze blows
That I'm too palpable to feel. A leaf
Falls, describing a plumb line.
I gesture just so, stretching my hand
So the scar on my left index finger
Shows white where a car's door
Decreed it would never quite straighten
The spells that made me may alter;
Who will finish this poem to you?

Wednesday, November 15, 2017


Joe Lampert could reach his open hand
Into mid-air, clench it shut and find,
Without fail, a chessman in his fist.
His watch was always five minutes fast
His shadow six minutes slow. My mother,
His daughter, told me his childhood friends
Mostly grew up to be gangsters.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017


The golem, if she is one, felt I should write
A poem about the bronze statue of Achilles
Which stands in
Hyde Park and is reputed
To be the ugliest public statue in
It’s 18 feet tall and made from melted cannons
Captured from the French by Arthur Wellesley.
It weighs 33 tonnes, which is, if you must know,
Seventy three thousand, nine hundred twenty pounds.
Originally nude, it somewhere acquired a fig leaf.
Its head belongs to the Iron Duke. He looks irate
At being exhibited nude in
Hyde Park. How the golem
Got it through customs I cannot guess. She lugged it
Into my dreams two weeks ago and refuses to take it away
Last night, the standard anxiety dream I'd ordered
Turned into a farce. My accusers kept bursting into laughter
Or whispering "My God! Where did you find that thing?"

Monday, November 13, 2017


Twelve below; the sidewalk
Rang as I walked on it.
I wore a three piece suit
Made of brown corduroy
Which had fooled no one.
Because I was cold,
Because I was unemployed,
I was eating ice cream.
This made sense at the time.

Thursday, November 9, 2017


The wide, shallow cup believes itself
To be immeasurably old.
The flowers running around it
Are from a place that isn’t here.
Its handle remembers gold paint
Drink from it quickly; only sentiment
Keep its atoms from flying apart.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017