Four Poems

by Howie Good

Josef K

All my friends
hate the book.
I think it’s the font –

simple-looking words,
wide apart.
It seems designed
for dyslexics.

I’ve stopped
recommending it
to people.

But if you’re like me,
one of those
who just knows
that we’re all
being secretly judged,

you remember
every day the fear
in Josef K’s eyes,

and sometimes
when you turn away,
it remembers you.

For Elizabeth, Dead at Sixty

When I close my eyes for sleep, everyone I ever loved is already there. A high school girlfriend gestures for me to come in, come in, despite the pervasive smell of smoke. The idea of you has replaced you yourself. I can hear hired kids raking broken glass somewhere in the dark. This isn’t something I’ve experienced before. The Kama Sutra advises, “The thighs are used like a pair of tongs.” We are torn that we may heal.


They say the day is coming –
and pretty soon, too –
when the souls of the dead
will be uploaded to the Google Cloud,
and God, if He even still exists,
will be able to rest,
drenched in dire purple
and reclining on plush snow,
until needed as an excuse
in whatever year of whatever war.

Status Update

Computer for Sale. Make an offer.
Please note: I’m not in a desperate situation.
I just need to pay for pricey car repairs,
Earn a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing online,
Be afraid . . . very afraid, get groceries,
Celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Verdi,
Learn the difference between “then” and “than,”
Time travel, stop up-talking, come home from Brooklyn,
Watch the video for amazing Before/After thicker hair transformation,
Become a millionaire playing fantasy football.

Source: Status updates on my Facebook home page, 10/7-9/2013

Autumn in the Air

It began with workmen cursing the rain, and various fish and wildlife wandering off. Terrible thoughts blew about the streets. Was it because my mother had to be my father as well? So many people everywhere, but no one else saw what I saw – strident breathing stirring the stricken leaves. And then came night, or its equivalent. As I grew older, more and more words were allowed to choose their own meanings.

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