Three by


David Wolf





Yeah?  Grow Up and Spare Me Your Cartoonish Quarrels



Yeah?  Grow up, and spare me your cartoonish quarrels.

The people are following through on their threat of extinction.

Show yourself.  I see you hiding above the hovering peaks.

Callow.  Naïve.  Inexpert.

As was our little Attila in his youth, abiding till inspired.

I have half a notion to cross the river and share my passé

self-assessments with a buffalo or two.





The Rocks Slid in Bunches



The rocks slid in bunches, crumbling like the years of half-assed work

comprising my dosh-mongering portfolio.

What will be light’s last meaning?

This is what the end of knowledge looks like, ideally,

to mannered farmers

short on nursery skills, long on messaging fantasies.

Which is why I fled the green hills of thought, the morning’s good eye

literate with rain.

My shirts are in a good place, buttoned down, lightly starched, which is

how my friends describe me.

Clearly a case of projection.

And what of my shoes, feeling the way through the haze that’s no match

for the gathering tramontane battering my roof.

Hanging eschews ignorance.

Not me grunting in my new tie.

Disarmed waves glimmer-dimple the Rio Foscari.

How’s that?


A demand for book-length sense barges in.

Excuse me.





How about It, More of a Grin, Eh?



How about it, more of a grin, eh?

You are no mayfly and you know how it feels to love.

Why the return, a mere seconds past closing the books on September?


Dead free not tired or high as the Pyrenees spirited

semi to France sometime back.

Three days at sea, sudden as an envelope.

The takeaway: the takeout could have been better.


Writing is a fine way to repeat yourself.

Talking, not so much.

Poems?  Only if feathered-up and fewer than never advised.


Regard being.

Stuck to the train.

Time to regret?


On the great ladder of beloveds past, where doth your favorite bird perch

to view the lake, to not know the kitchen and all its recipes of argument

echoing, the parchment-wrapped faces of history muffled, steaming?


How strong is the future, how much further to carry the load,

to tarry like a toad?

Stop ’em.  Ponder like ________ would in the doped-up glare of his

second coming.

Composure is nothing to laugh off, hah! 


You are you and your psychological certainty ripples wildly

like a bag full of literary allusions spilled on the brûléed sidewalk

offering nothing

to the haiku masters colliding on the avenue, big deal, leave off now,

spitting shale stars into your phone.









David Wolf is the author of five collections of poetry, Open Season, The Moment Forever, Sablier I, Sablier II, and Visions (with artist David Richmond).  His work has appeared in New York Quarterly, Poet & Critic, River Styx Magazine,and numerous other literary magazines and journals.  He is an emeritus professor of English at Simpson College and serves as the literary editor for Janus Head: Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature, Continental Philosophy, Phenomenological Psychology, and the Arts. 



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