Monday, April 14, 2008

Finding One Poem, Sharing Another

Today's Poem-a-Day was a big, pleasant surprise: Jeffrey McDaniel, a former classmate from George Mason University.

The poem shared by was saucy, but the poem I heard on his MySpace page was lovely. I will share both with you. Please visit Jeff's MySpace page (no membership required).

The first you would have received as part of Poem-a-Day (to which I'm sure you subscribed). The second one you simply must listen to — please go to the link on the title and listen.

Compulsively Allergic to the Truth

I'm sorry I was late.
I was pulled over by a cop
for driving blindfolded
with a raspberry-scented candle
flickering in my mouth.
I'm sorry I was late.
I was on my way
when I felt a plot
thickening in my arm.
I have a fear of heights.
Luckily the Earth
is on the second floor
of the universe.
I am not the egg man.
I am the owl
who just witnessed
another tree fall over
in the forest of your life.
I am your father
shaking his head
at the thought of you.
I am his words dissolving
in your mind like footprints
in a rainstorm.
I am a long-legged martini.
I am feeding olives
to the bull inside you.
I am decorating
your labyrinth,
tacking up snapshots
of all the people
who've gotten lost
in your corridors.

From The Endarkenment. © 2008 by Jeffrey McDaniel.

Listen to this one before you read it by clicking on the title. Then stick around and listen to others — especially the Archipelago of Kisses. You'll be glad you did.

The Quiet World

In an effort to get people to look
into each other's eyes more,
the government has decided to allot
each person exactly one hundred
and sixty-seven words, per day.

When the phone rings, I put it
to my ear without saying hello.
In the restaurant I point
at chicken noodle soup. I am
adjusting well to the new way.

Late at night, I call my long
distance lover and proudly say
I only used fifty-nine today.
I saved the rest for you.

When she doesn't respond, I know
she's used up all her words
so I slowly whisper I love you,
thirty-two and a third times.
After that, we just sit on the line
and listen to each other breathe.

from The Forgiveness Parade. © 1998 by Jeffrey McDaniel.

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