Today's poem is by Bruce Cohen
Select one isolated cloud.
Spy it your entire life, like a personal impersonator.
The fish in the diner's aquarium blink twice for yes.
God sends cryptic messages, only to me, on these stained menus
After the 24-hour diner closes.
During my meal I express to my imaginary waitress the free water tastes
Like it's smuggled from an aquarium; I detect a hint of algae.
I concede doughnuts are three-dimensional, but why
Are waitresses smuggling new bacteria out of this world in their tips?
What if God were common lint?
I'll leave the car running on the approach to the bridge.
No lousy tipper, as the wind kicks up I peel off C-notes & Sawbucks & Fins
& lonely George Washingtons & let them migrate off the bridge.
I did not fathom the full extent of myself until I reached the very top of the bridge. A disorderly V of geese
broke rank in complex denominations
All prime numbers. One feather less than prime.
Select one fish from the aquarium & wink. The river below is a replica
Of an aquarium whose H20 is vaguely three-dimensional,
Where I can smuggle exotic fish out of this glass world.
Cumulous clouds are God's spies. My life has been lived badly already
By a stunt man, an extra. I am my own twinthe problem & solution.
I have seen this movie already. Both the original & the remake.
Who among us is not an abstract number composed of a whispering
Linear math wind? Who is not a regular guy slumping in a diner slurping coffee?
I wanted only to have a repartee of drivers licenses representing the dozens of disparate
States all with capital letters, lots of aliases,
Blow up sex dolls & hitchhikers buried along the Interstates,
Like a sequestered jury brushing its collective teeth, sharing one toothbrush.
Illogical to think there is one God, still, or still no God.
In the evening I scrape together change from sofa cushions & glove compartments
In the humdrum. Or is it conundrum?
God's a stunt man, a stand-in, who takes my place when I'm living in my elsewhere
A little hung over from innuendos & the brittle silence after,
Coming to grips with coffee aromas diligently regressing back
Into their beans of embryonic origin, will I forget & simply drive away
Or simply drive away?
Copyright © 2010 Bruce Cohen All rights reserved
from The Literary Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission
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