Mitch said: "I'm trying hard to live
I think about it constantly:
A century is an abyss not all
"This field, once, was home to brains
And paint the mystery, how time
Describes the line (that's history)
Where people (at the tangent point)
Bear the weight, or run behind.
Into those dances oceans sing
Leon Schapiro fled
First to Paris then New York.
Of the Jews, white hair, blue eyes,
Beret. Right off he said: "We need
To be old is terrible."
Eighty, in Jamaica, kept
A shop and the beach towel concession.
Jimmy asked his son's wife's friend
Away with him, to fish in warmer seas.
Heller, rhymed behind his desk:
How does that help
When you're old
And it's cold
In your soul?
My son is so religious he
At the same table with me."
I didn't hear at all, or hearing
The softly said need not
And turned back to the book,
The ball beneath the sycamore.
Also thundered like the god
Most, doesn't wonder about might
"Have you changed at all
To live longer?" "No, as always
Right food and rest. Also avoid
Also disbelieve in numbers.
We drive nails into the hooves, twist off
the horns with worn vise grips, separate mates,
pluck the tails, shave the wool, amputate
the balls, check carefully every wet cough,
hide the pincers inside the leather gloves
(the same soft leather used for critics' shoes),
and eye the fluctuations in market news;
we pat the beasts that we really do love,
groom them tenderly for 4-H events,
eat spiced beef sandwiches and drink weak beer,
watch the authorities gauge the worth of our steers,
and visit the county fair's gospel tent.
The music rises in the sweet summer air
as the beasts begin to speak, in some kind of Catholic
nativity, as they put on flesh, lick
each others' wounds, and join with us, in prayer.
He said simply they'd always be with us,
Astounding one with such nerve, cold foresight
-All generated in jig-time-no fuss,
He had sized our worlds up, had them down pat,
Left no fly in the ointment to discuss;
Those who'd have given him his coat and hat
-And the high road to Ethiopia,
Nicaragua, any other planet-
Were quite pished on, made easy joke of
At that very fantastical banquet;
Now there are those but remembering the feet,
The unguents, recalling tears, silken hair,
The rub of ceremony-not the meet
And proper handling of an old despair.
T. P. MacGloin
Earth's first fruit.
Crushed grape, locked;
Winnowed wheat, ground.
Dark, damp cellar
Hot, dry oven
Perfect perfect fare.
Edward L. DeRosa