Monday Poem

Odder StillJim Culleny…………………….. As odd as it is that a moon comes upbehind the inelegant tree behind our houseover the dark mountain, grey-whiteand silver-dollar like –a night eyecrying silver– it’s odder still to thinkof a moon that never was…………………… As odd as spring seems, fresh and greenas the crisp salad before the salmon fillet,as odd…

Monday Poem

New ThingJim Culleny I opened a Twitter acccount out of curiosity. I admit it, I was born into a far simpler techno world —pre-TV, prime-time radio, number-please phones on party lines, straight-6 engines with carburetors, 78 records with needles the size of ten-penny spikes —an antiquated world. And although it’s a little murky to me…

Monday Poem

“Hitler remained a serious reader all his life, spending much of his disposable income on books during the 1920s and regularly passing quiet evenings in his library during the 1930s and '40s, no matter how dreadful the orders he'd been giving during the day.” –Michael Dirda’s review of “Hitler’s Private Library” by Timothy W. Ryback…

Monday Poem

HydrantJim Culleny Steel sentinel on our street.Its domed yellow cap topped with a wrench-ready fitting,its three short blue arms wrench-ready too, its stumpy red torso squat in the snow ringed round its base with brown March mushin late winter when our longing for sunis most poignant; when it hallucinatesbuds and birds; when it wants to…

Monday Poem

“It's all just one big lie … basically a giant Ponzi scheme.” —Bernie Madoff Life in the Fast LaneJim Culleny A crow atop a phone polelike a cocked hat –a selfsure birdeyeing a white line lunchwho understands the nuances of trafficwaits, patient as a tick,until the last ten-wheeler grinds bythen swoops down quick.Caaa! he says,…

Monday Poem

//Black Sunday ShoesJim Culleny Grandpa was stiff and starkas the handle of an old world hoe but grandmother must have had her dreams……………………..At a window in a stuffed chair she satfingering a rosary gazing down Roessler murmuring Hail Mary’s through the pane bead by bead……………………..At other times in that chairshe stroked her long greyblack hair…

Monday Poem

///Where Buddha WasJim Culleny I thumb down the pile of books: Paper Dance, 55 Latin Poets Wislawa Szymborska, PoemsNew and Collected Poetry Like Bread (maybe the waymy mother made), Poets of thePolitical ImaginationAnd Billy Collins Sailing Alone Around theRoomwhich is pretty much what we all do to a great extent until, at the bottom: Precise…

Monday Poem

////../ Kneedeep as LeavesJim CullenyToday, in a java shopamong caffeinators, wired, Ireceived a poem from a friendwhom I've known sinceit didn't seem importantto understand friendship But now I doand appreciate his calling me into the world of this poem(which is not his, but hisanyway because he saw some truth in itand supposed thatI might see…

Monday Poem

///Pythagoras and me @ 2 amJim Culleny I could be up all nightwithout a single line to write;………………………I might be ass-in-chair till 1st lighteyes propped with toothpicks.………………………Open, I might sit with digitspoised over a keyboard………………………like condors on thermalsscanning the earth for a bite ……………………… the desert page dry and white. I might even catch some…

Monday Poem

//Dear Joe The Plumber, In E.L. Doctorow’s Ragtime, Emma Goldman explains to character Evelyn Nesbit why Evelyn (having become recently newsworthy) has become such a celebrity:“I am often asked the question,” says Emma, “how can the masses permit themselves to be exploited by the few. The answer is By being persuaded to identify with them.…

Monday Poem

///Bread, House, Salt, God —the family of simple monosyllabic words.–from Another Country, a memoir by Adam Zagajewski; Bread House Salt GodJim Culleny The tsunami scent of yeast flooded our housein the mornings my mother baked bread. Up through floorboards it came;up the stairwell.  It spreadstirring our dreamselves awake. Baked bread A bell for the nose,…