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.

The One That Got Away

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I tried writing a poem once about a running joke. It was just ahead of me as the best poems are. I sprang off my writer’s block and ran after it with my butterfly net and my blue bucket of hope; but I was out of condition and this one really had legs. It waved back to me as it disappeared in a cloud of dust over a nearby hill.