Poems

NY

 

I would like to have Mia
Farrow’s telephone number.

Not that I’d ever call or leave
a message, though I’d hope she

knew I could, but never would.
Discretion, she’d smile, is his

calling card. And that way
I could still have cawfee

with Woody, though I never have.
He would never have to end

the friendship we have not begun,
and we could eat our custard buns

in silence. The clarinet solo
would follow us into the street

I’ve never walked down, and the green
light in the American Elms of Central

Park would shimmer through our parting
and make the whole afternoon -

the entire city where I’ve never been -
as clear and smooth as Mia’s skin.

 


 

The Love Song of Michael J Fox

 

I know it’s wrong, but when I think of you
it’s only to remember disease.
A trick of the mind I suspect, like
an echo, “Marty! Marty!”

You’re always in that puffy vest;
we’re always trying to find our way
back.

The sawdust is shovelled back
into brass buckets.
The coffee spoon dips and dips
into the mug, drawing
instant granules homeward.
The cat withdraws its paper tongue,
slinking backwards, mewing “ytram,
ytram”, as the patient on the table rouses,
and snaps upright in the sudden dawn.

So many of them cannot take part
in my off-camera tremors,
cannot see them, or me,
until I make my visit
through publisher or publicist.

You always dared disturb the screen,
skittling along corridors, growing hair
in the skulls of a hundred thousand boys,
making hearts kick up - with the power
of love - from the new estate road.

In sawdust restaurants, idle Alex Ps
count peanut shells, make excuses
to visit the men’s room, so they might
flux their capacitors. And the teenagers
come and go, talking of Michael
the angel. Oh, I’d die to call you chicken
in front of Biff just to see
if you had the wherewithal to travel
back in time, retrieve your almanac
and re-write the future.

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