Friday, September 29, 2006

I did something fun this time when I was writing a poem: I saved all the cut-out parts (and even some of the parts I kept)and made them into another poem. So now I have two poems, front and back. Tell me which you like better.



Miriam’s father
grunts and shuts off the lights behind her
we must save, we must save lights out at ten

(thermostat at 62)
the oil bill’s been through the roof

up in the attic squirrels
ooze through the roof-hole
set up a formal dinner
with Miriam’s miniature tea set
buried in a hat box since she was ten
when she held her red braids
between her teeth
& ran into the street
(Mrs. Webster swerved and hit the orange tree)

after the late, late lawnmower has finished gnashing
Miriam listens to KROC under the sheets
until all the twittering bedsprings
rest their squeak

she whips downstairs
flings switches skyward

above the stove: the garage: the coat closet: the basement stairs: the crawlspace (tang of ant poison):under the sink: the refrigerator: the porch: the five in the livingroom--including both
sides of the brown velvet couch
& the spot above the fireplace that shines

& while she wastes that electricity
she whistles a song
only the well-heeled squirrels
(can hear)


The Garage Door Opener’s Perfume

(on her battery-powered radio)
waits (thermostat at 62) (old spice)
(made by the oil bill) (after midnight)
in short sleeves and baseball caps

(not even chipped)
(Mrs. Webster swerved and hit the orange tree)
(gas and dirt, smoke) on their fortified front doors
the squirrels unpack the tiny china
spread it in rows on a kerchief
(with their teeth)
(in the corner)
(bedroom, bathroom, kitchen) (tongues)

until the late, late have finished gnashing
(into the Osgood’s front porch)
down the street & all the fathers
have said the same words about the weather turning the keys

the late, late lawnmower has
(next door) (the same words about the weather)
in all the rooms (has finished)
the carpets and heavy, heavy drapes settle
(with a sigh) lawnmowers
(with a sigh)
(into weightless dreams)
(random) the ends of
bright as an electric charge
(spoiled fat) (blasting through a wire): (musty cardboard): (wet dog):
(rotten pine): (ant poison):
(bleach): (old spaghetti): (wet grass and exhaust): (potpourri)
(pine sol and ash)
(on the portrait of the woman (crouching at a stream))
Old Chanel
(that light)
(can hear (that light)

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