POEM: for E.B.

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for E.B.

couch, cats
collecting words
putting them in the best order

Rejection: doctor’s office, or

nail polish
big sunglasses, sometimes
filtered, sometimes knot

Rejection: grading papers, or

steaming cups of __________
leftist gnomes
Georgia countryside

Rejection: this rebellious body, or

1 white
1 black
:thousand-mile stares, the both of them

Rejection: your advances, or

driver’s seat, side mirror
cold beach
walking, sitting, writing

Rejection: a dull life, or

desk menagerie
selfie, inscrutable
or maybe not

Rejection: the unexamined self, or

/ / /

2 March 2014
Oak Street

(Photo source)

POEM: last night’s dishes

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last night’s dishes

little bits of garlic on a dinner plate
from the naan that came warm and pliable
out of the toaster oven atop the fridge
(eaten following the oldest question)

in this bowl, crusted remnants of refried beans
served on blue corn chips with “fake cheese”
while the cats prowled the living room
and we talked about old lovers

two bottles of Pennsylvania rootbeer
over which we discussed the future
before realizing there was no percentage in it
decided instead to focus on the present

I feel them in my hands, smooth and wet
the delicious hint of pain from the hot water
I hold them up in fading light to check they’re clean
then place each one carefully on the rack to dry

/ / /

28 February 2014
Oak Street

POEM: pages

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pages

I opened the file
it contained two pages
of quotes from journalists
gushing about you
but not one from me

I have been neatly
edited out of your biography
struck from the record
of your accomplishments
left behind by the parade
of your admirers

where once you eagerly
sought my counsel
now your people
send group messages
on which my name
is one among many

it’s only fair
I’ve excised you as well
opened up my biography
removed the pages
on which you’re mentioned
leaving a slight fraying
on the binding, nothing more

/ / /

25 February 2014
Oak Street

[Photo source]