A classical traditionalist would call
on the ancient muses. Updated to
postmodern times Calliope would
be heralded to inspire narcissistic
Facebook or relationship epics.
Feeling really hot and onto that
girl whose drunken number he got
at the bar, he might hit up a thonged
Euterpe for some love advice.
Poor poet indeed.
Imagination blunted by pop culture,
Americanese, Beyoncé and Lady Gaga,
such a wordsmith has no connected antenna.
Poet in name only, such as these do not
recognize that the muse takes more
a crimson falling leaf, rotted end of a log,
a cloud telling a tale of past experience,
fire smoke signaling end, fish bent
backwards leaping a rapids, reflection
in another’s glasses, morning fog
carrying ancient ghosts, a burning desert
full of life, the mind as connected messenger
to all that is, has been, or will ever be.
This is the poet of the mind,
This the herald through which the world
New Acquaintance Yellow Stripe Optional
stopped at the gas station a stranger filled her up
stared through the windshield made the glass wet
pointed to her hood opened her up
raked fingernails on the horn pressed the button
settled on the seat made her comfortable
eyed his wrench torqued her tight
paid with her eyes closed her trunk
drove away wished for another ride
Dr. Ralph Monday is an Associate Professor of English at Roane State Community College in Harriman, TN., where he teaches composition, literature, and creative writing courses. He has been published widely in over 50 journals including Agenda, The New Plains Review, New Liberties Review, Fiction Week Literary Review and many others. His poetry has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and Houghton Mifflin’s “Best of” Anthologies, as well as other awards. A chapbook, All American Girl and Other Poems, was published in July 2014. A book Lost Houses and American Renditions is scheduled for publication in May 2015 by Aldrich Press.