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Sample poems

In a Montreal Bistro

We were all on verbal flights
winging on myths of our own.
She said her pen could fly
(as she served us another drink).
I liked the image, tipped to excess.

I told her only poems could fly,
quoted a colleague of mine as proof.
She doubted my sincerity. And said so.

Her proof employed no artifice.
Just a spring-loaded ballpoint pen.

And when she jammed it on the table
it flew on the wall of the fluorescent sun,
came to rest at my feet
left me to ponder
the merits of myth-making
in a world that worships technology.


Pollution Interdite

The dogs own Nice. Everywhere
the evidence lies. Dogshit grows
on sidewalks, steets and grass.

The dogs of Nice are impartial,
indiscriminate. At the entrance
of the park a sign warns owners
of penalties against this burst
of flower-turds. The dogs
scorn the sign and consequences,
pretend they do not recognize
the artist's graphic depiction
of "Dog Squatting Over Turd"
The dog Xed out in heavy black
like a victim on a Mafia hit list.

When the dogs assume control
over the rest of the world, will
they address the human problem
with similar signs?


Cowboy Christ

In Paris, Texas, Christ rises above
the final rest of Willet Babcock.
The long-dead rancher is well anchored
for fierce winds. He cares little

about the three of us, drawn here
not for prayers over Babcock's bones,
but to stare, as we do now, up
at this sculpted Christ astride

Babcock's massive headstone
that derricks twenty feet against
the wintry Texas sky, His shoulder
against the cross, flowing robe

to His feet. We are poets all, two
fled south from a frozen country
to follow our Texas colleague here.
to scuff the stoney path to Babcock

though the pebbles we dislodge above
are bootless to his ears as we
assume the perfect vantage point to see
beneath the robe of Jesus His left foot,

His cowboy boot. Why shouldn't I believe
that in Texas even He would wear boots?
For the moment we are silent as Babcock,
gathered here around the feet of Christ.