Tuesday, September 19, 2017

CH



Once in a while someone tries
To tell Coleman Hawkins that
He died in 1969. It never takes.
Listen. A few notes drift a bit
Past the minor key they started in
When he played them at Kelly’s
But that’s about it. Somewhere
It is always 1946. The war is over
And the cloud of cigarette smoke
Hanging over the music
Won’t do you a lick of harm.

Monday, September 18, 2017

SECOND FROM THE LEFT, DANCING IN THE STREET FOR AN AUDIENCE OF FOUR CHILDREN



Suspended in midleap you look
To be forty or so. Not old, no;
But not all that young  either.
I like your beaky nose; some day
You may become Margaret Dumont
Eternally perplexed by Groucho Marx
But adoring him all the same. He, too,
Is puzzled that he loves someone
Who will never eunderstand his jokes.

But that will come later. For now,
The problem is that you, along
With three other women in ballet skirts
Jumped in the air just as Andre Kertesz
Snapped a picture. There you hang.
Even Death can't draw you down
Or move one finger of your flat hand.

Friday, September 15, 2017

PREMONITION



Jane Welsh Carlyle had a presentiment
Of her death. Faceless men, she dreamed
Carried a heavy coffin into her room
And rested it before her on the ground.
It was fine thing, made of close-grained wood,
Lined with soft purple velvet. She said
“Are you sure? I do not think Mr. Carlyle
Would spend quite so much money.
Pine is a very decent wood and pine needles
Are well enough for a corpse’s rest.”

Three days later, she had another dream
The same men returned but one of them
Had acquired a face, or borrowed one,
So that he could look chagrined.
“You were right. The coffin was meant
For quite a different Mrs. Carlyle.
If it is any comfort the three monkeys
We were supposed to bring to you
Have brought her no end of trouble.”

Thursday, September 14, 2017

BEFORE DAWN



The most important
Poet to emerge
In France since
World War II
Is being pursued
Through the streets.
The least important
Poets to emerge
In France since
World War II
Nod to each other;
Today they’ve found
Something
To write about.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

FOR AESRED



One of the perks of being God
Is existing while not existing
Ayin, who does not exist,
Prays to both, but not
At the same time.
Her shadow
Has holes in it
For which it blames
Moths who are sworn
Servants of the locust's god.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

NEW NEIGHBOR




Hedge priest's unhappy that hedge witch
Has moved into his shrub but admits
Hedge whore might be worse. Or,
He confides to hedge player over
His hedge beer, very much better.

Monday, September 11, 2017

BRILLO



The Unmoved Mover knows who
Spray-painted it with graffiti.
It has no desires. Still
It wouldn't mind if someone
Scrubbed it clean again.