Remember Old Lang Syne,
his spastic wooden leg, his catarrh?
How we’d get him going on train whistles and mothers
after the fourth or fifth pint?
Ah, Nostalgia. Just ain’t what it used to be.
Wind rehearses its rut,
grists its ledger of damage, worries
Unfair! Unfair! It cries
from its dry heart, starving
in its stubborn quarrel.
The armed game of shame,
the fling and flung of do and done,
blind man’s bluff of squat and strut.
Oh, pidgin soul in the wallow
I am burning the library to cook nettle soup.
I call it staying alive. You call it feeding the wrong wolf.
Words on the verge of becoming extinct
hive my tongue: Pulchritude, Doxology.
Words that conjure pox
but mean Beauty, Praise.
5. Meanwhile, Time . . .
Vladimir Nabokov, tireless lepidopterist, wrote:
“I have dissected and drawn the genitalia of 360 specimens.”
What can you, I, say of our work?
Who was it who said
Happiness writes white?
Bring on the blizzards!
Harness the sled dogs!
Photo: Cindy Gagnon.