Poem with a Great Last Line

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I have just written a poem.

I read it to my granddaughter.

“Hey! Great last line,” she says.

“But what about the rest of the poem?” I say.

“Great last line”

I go back to the poem.

Read it a few times.

It is a great last line.

So what I do is this: I jettison the rest of the poem and keep

the last line,

I read it a few times.

I read it to her.

She hesitates.

I read it again.

It seems to lack something,” she says.

So I put the poem back together like it was and read it to her.

“Great last line,” she says.

Forgive Me

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Forgive me. I am not myself today.

I wasn’t myself yesterday either.

To tell you the truth, I’m really uncertain whether I will be myself tomorrow.

Or the next day. Or the next.

Where I’ve gone to, I just don’t know.

I have informed the police, the Missing Person’s Bureau.

They have put out an all points alert.

I take time off work.

I go looking for myself in bars, parks, in shopping malls.

I take photographs of myself to show them what I looked like.

Ugly bastard, someone quips.

Go easy, I say. He’s not a bad bloke once you get to know him.

The rest shake their heads sadly.

I go home, hang my hat on the rack and sit down morosely on the old lounge.

Ahh, there you are, I say, almost sitting on top of me.

I was here all along, he says. Where have YOU been?

A Petulance of Poets*

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Not a flock of seagulls

Nor a murder of crows

But a petulance of poets

Gathered in the conference room

Of the public library

Each champing at the bit

For their turn to read

Not really listening

to others

But when their turn comes,

Oh the words, the words,

Such melody, such sweetness, such wit.

Was ever anything ….

Barely noticing that many who had already read

Had gone home or hit the bar

down the street.

They rattle on regardless.

Where’s the stage manager when you need him?

 

 

* ‘They never listened to one another; they were preoccupied with waiting for their turn’ [Jean Stafford: ‘An Influx of Poets’]

Jump

 

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It’s Milly’s birthday today.

It is?

Yes. But what do you buy a cat who has everything?

A parachute.

A parachute?

Yes. The next time she gets on the roof and can’t get down all she has to do is jump.

 

An Optimistic Place

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It’s in an optimistic place.

You can tell by the smiley face.

But multiplied some twenty times?

Such duplication seems a crime.

“It’s over the top. Visual excess.

One of you is enough”, my son-in-law says.