The Early Bird Catches the World
The philosophy chair from Whitman College
roller blades circles around us
in a black beekeepers mask.
Were here to greet the dawn with Charles Potts,
on his weekly constitutional up Mill Creek
to the Army Corps of Engineers dam and back.
Elderberry trees along the asphalt path bear fruit.
Herons, mallards, cranes, Sunday solemn,
Sunday silent. Its we who cant shut up.
Bukowski is a tough sell with Jensen.
Potts piles on, aslant. He wins. He gloats.
Roethke may be royalty up here,
but Charles leaves him stranded
up a hundred year old beech tree,
crooning Look at me to birds of prey
in Nelson Riddle time. And then theres Larkin
off the grid, a blighted branch, a windless bag!
Potts dismisses Ionesco, tosses Corso in the creek.
His lawyer cycles by, that lazy sonofabitch,
a September streak chasing October.
We departed in full dark, the risen sun
sheds reams of light. Charles unspools a yarn,
about a prison guard, his guilt, his suicide.
Clueless, back from two years in Japan,
Charles sees the widow and says, Say hello to Monty.
Her face looked like Id slapped her.
Now the day.
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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 43 | Spring 2014