By Elton Glaser
Will this be one more summer spent
Among the ornamental mailboxes and garden gnomes,
As if I’d come down with a dose of lassitude,
Too much muck in the bloodstream?
That’s better, I guess, than a long month in Lubango,
Not far from the hovels and dead dogs,
With something strange steaming in the heat
And a bad case of the squitters,
And no worse, in its own way, than hearing someone
At the next table praise the taste of
Extra virgin truffle oil on the rutabaga fries,
Parsley butter sliding down a bison steak,
When what I crave is cruder: ecstasy of the unraveled,
Loose elations in a rumpled bed.
I’ve got nothing against sampling a farmer’s stand,
All those honeydews nestled in straw
And peaches fat and pink and above reproach,
Or an afternoon rocking on the front porch,
Sipping a tall cool glass of julep and watching
The dappled daze of sunlight on the leaves.
Ambling through the season, in a moveable feast,
Suits me like balm on a busted knuckle,
But when this life winds down I’d like to leave
Clean and alone, like a bone
Scrubbed free of the misery it went through,
And with a knob at the end
Big enough to knock some sense into
God On the messier side of heaven.
Here, in this bulging summer, too stuck or lazy
To rent another place to roost,
Let me at least reach out to what remains,
Anything still succulent and touchable.
Elton Glaser has published eight full-length poetry collections, most recently two in 2013: Translations from the Flesh (Pittsburgh) and The Law of Falling Bodies (Arkansas).
Originally appeared in NOR 29