Monday, April 14, 2008

April is still national poetry month

Greg Luce, of Enchilada's Blog, wrote about two challenges issued by somebody for the month of April. One was to write a poem a day. The other is to take the last line of a favorite poem and use it as the first line of a new poem. Greg did that quite well on his blog.

Here is my own vain attempt:


It looks like a cracked Egyptian tablecloth,
hanging from the line all by itself.
It’s been there ever since I moved in a block or so down the street.

It’s there every morning when I walk to the bus stop and there again (or still) every evening.
It could be from the reign of Psusennes, last king of the 21st Egyptian Empire, washed and hung by his beautiful daughter Maatkare.
Except that it hangs in a non-descript neighborhood in an anonymous suburb, not in the anteroom of a pyramid or crypt.

It’s like a rock or a treestump, except that some human made it
and some other human hung it out there to dry. Or die.
Somebody simply moved away, I guess, and left this thing (a sheet, a curtain, whatever it is) behind.

As I sit on my front step on a warm evening, I can hear it, luffing and snapping in the breeze. I strain to understand these sounds.

Guess where the first line came from. Prize: Two tickets to the off-Broadway revival of LeRoi Jones' "The Toilet."


Rob Hardy said...

Some poet named Richard Brautigan wrote those lines. "After Halloween Slump" from The Pill Versus the Springhill Mine Disaster.

Jim H. said...

And we have a winner! Rob Hardy, get ready to head to Bayonne for the LeRoi Jones revival, currently just a gleam in some crazy producer's eye.

Greg said...

Not a bad effort! I esp. like the last two lines ("luffing": excellent!). Thanks as always for your kind comments. Congrats Rob!