Thursday, August 30, 2007

Poetry Wednesday Thursday

Sorry, didn't post anything poetic yesterday. Actually, I did, briefly, post a poem I had written in June called "Sipping Red Bull through a Straw," a voyeuristic subway piece, but I had second thoughts, both due to subject matter and ultimately (and more importantly), due to my happiness with the poem. I think it's too good to throw up before it has faced more revision.

That said, here's a consolation prize from my archives, a not very good poem, but one that may amuse:


I walked up the hill,

right up to them,

sitting, standing, looking away, eating.

"Okay," I began excitedly, "I bet

you guys haven't heard poetry before."

I extracted a battered notebook from my backpack

and skimmed through,

trying to find a sonnet or an ode, haiku

or something that cattle would enjoy.

I finally found something half-decent

and announced in a serious voice,

"This is the first time I've read

this particular piece before an audience,

so please, be gentle." Two dozen pairs

of somber eyes focused on me as I began.

I don't know if it was the poem,

or the sound of my voice, or simply,

the fact that they were just cows,

but halfway through I glanced up

and only three or four were still

paying attention. Everyone else had

gone back to grazing, cud-chewing,

and flicking tails at bothersome flies.

Disappointed, I half-heartedly

finished the recital and closed

my book. The sole remaining captive

listener shook her head, a red ear-tag

flapping vigorously,

like exuberant applause.

Then she turned away

and let it fly. A beautiful cowshit

by bovine standards, I guess.

Turd after turd popped into view

and landed with a significant splat!

in the lush emerald grass. It was

humiliating, yet somewhat appropriate.

I turned and lumbered down the pasture.

A light rain began to fall

just as I reached the house

and I wandered inside to work

on some desperately-needed revisions.

Pihanakalani Ranch, Pa'auilo, Hawaii, November 1993

©1993, William Dickenson Cohen

Seemed an appropriate choice and yes, it's based on a true story.

1 comment:

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