A Passenger’s View, Tuesday’s Commute, and Other Poems

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tuesday commute

A Passenger’s View

Like a pocket watch
Reflecting lights in Sears,
The stars’ sovereign presides over
A fixed desert’s moisture.
The jagged, sloping summits
Double as sundaes and make me forget.
These valleys beyond support nothing
While stiffs in pressed slacks
Scramble beneath in a trance.
This ship descends as the
Soaring kingdom is decimated.
The city is a crutch now—
A prostitute never trusting a breath to speak.


Tuesday’s Commute

This morning, I saw a Cripple cross Main Street
In the Rolls Royce of wheelchairs.
A flippant rain fell as he
Weaved through the early spring fog
And the hurried Hondas and hybrids.
He wore a tuxedo t-shirt
And “walked” a Jack Russellish mutt with Balboa arms.
Having scaled the curb, The Cripple looked through the traffic,
As if to say, “I’ve earned it.”
The traffic sloshed by while
His confidant hovered, knees quivering,
Next to a mail box marked ‘X’ in chalk.
Lifting my foot off the brake,
I looked down at my briefcase,
Then at the pleats in my pants and said,


A Recurring Dream of a Dog

Where is Megan?
In the woods forever.
Like a landed surfer
Galloping over caps of loam
And long-dead foliage
And geological files,
She is happy in the places that are real—
Those that breathe
And watch summers press
Into death and resurrection.
Megan plays in the woods forever
And she is the woods
As I am Megan
And the woods are me.
In the speed of a thought,
All are fused.


Scenes from a Public Library

Sitting in this arid archive, I hear
Whispers, like wintry seduction, reach for
Ears undermined by the subtle humming
Of the over-bearing aquarium.

Ageless adjectives breed new meaning while
My lucid five wits lasso lame lurkers:
A whining wheel wanes like distant whales’ wails
As the hour glass aide restores slain shelves.

I keep to the corner, hiding work poured
From elderly texts like hoarse harlots’ hoards.
Snow-white sheets shuffle and the language breathes
While Act five, scene three sees King Macbeth seethe.


Machine Gun Patriot

Discharge, Thunder, and redress the obtuse!
Our worthy quarrel is that which we laud
Like a fair-haired war horse trampling to truce.

Until their rusty-sweet blood is profuse
Sway them with fire bolts, with shoulders broad!
Discharge, Thunder, and redress the obtuse

Or yours is a mind of migrant recluse.
Blaze through the sting of a glacial core thawed
Like a fair-haired war horse trampling to truce.

From their immovable famine, deduce
Why these faceless foes shoot forth and applaud.
Discharge, Thunder, and redress the obtuse

While our shark-eyed liberators seduce
The mopped minds jostling with election fraud.
Like a fair-haired war horse trampling to truce,

Righteous absolvers stream like gastric juice
In the belly of this leopard de-clawed.
Discharge, Thunder, and redress the obtuse
Like a fair-haired war horse trampling to truce!



Joseph, who is very self-conscious, teaches English at the college level.  He loves all animals–especially his dogs, Megan and Frankie–and enjoys thinking about writing much more than the act of writing itself.  He is a daydreamer and is repulsed by social media.  His family is understanding of his mood swings and he sleeps with a hatchet.

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