Jun '02 [Home]

As My Father Used to Say…

Memo from Void
Jim McCurry

as my father always said,
look for me in the
agate glint,
the squirrel's eye…
those photos your mom saved
from Yellowstone

the self-reference is what
you will purge tomorrow
by mixing 1.5 oz (3 measuring
tablespoons—NOT tableware)
with at least 4 oz cold clear
liquid and sitting on the throne

while Sacramento hands the Lakers
their Aztec heads on a platter
how can one doubt—

and appearing at 6:30 a.m.
to be reamed and cleaned
and viewed from within
by the camera eye.

Stay empty

—Old Man

jim mc curry/ 10-3-43 los angeles, california/ instructor at carl sandburg college/ galesburg, illinois since fall 1980/ poems recently accepted by DROUGHT and SNOW MONKEY ; less recently by BIG MOON, BOUNDARY 2, COLORADO REVIEW, FARMER'S MARKET, QUARTERLY WEST, WRITER'S FORUM, and others

¡Que Vivan!
Ginny Wray

The women worked in flowered smocks,
open at the bosom in the summertime,
making buttons and bows for my refugee father
(sun worshipper, millionaire)
in his garment center factory on West 38th Street.
He watched over them, and spoiled them
—especially Little Eva—
and as my father always said,
¡que vivan las mujeres!

When I was very young and asked him what it meant,
he said, Long live women!
And what about men? I asked.
Men! he said laughing.
Men are good for nothing.
The only thing we're good for
is making women happy.
We write songs to them and adore them,
and paint them in pastels stepping out of the bath.

Then he asked me what I planned to be
when I grew up.
I said I planned to have men paint me
stepping out of the bath.
(A little song would be all right, and some adoring.)
Yes, I think I'll be a woman.
Be a woman! he said.
What a wonderful idea!
¡Y que vivan las mujeres!

As My Father Used to Say Haiku
Richard Pearse

Keep your t-shirts clean,
your hands to yourself, and don't
salute a non-com.

When you case a bank
don't whistle nor sing with verve.
Mist on cedars? Please.

You're turning your hips
ahead of your hands again—
why you strike out, jerk.

Your weight in groceries.
And save some cash too—payday
not til Saturday.

Whatever you swipe,
don't come straight home with it, or
to anyone's place

you know. Be secret
as the fog that lazes in,
rusts our best Buick.