Fred Pollack

Father died under Carter, Mother towards the end
of Reagan. Possibly we should date
our lives, like the ancients,
by the tenure of our rulers – more
fine-tuned, fewer doubtful implications.
I hope I live to see
Biden temporize, irrelevantly invoke
his record, restore some process,
diminish death. Meanwhile the first million
will drown, the first billion
start inland.

(Am writing from Year XCVIII dell’Era Fascista.)

Lately two references – one to a hopelessly
hurt child, one to pets
abandoned by a highway – suddenly
dug a straight shaft
to the weepies beneath the world. I hadn’t thought
I was so vulnerable. Old-fashioned guy;
don’t see wounds
as medals. Maybe it was just
the easy tears of age. It was age in any case,
where you have to prefer
the disease of remembering to that of forgetting.

Author of two book-length narrative poems, THE ADVENTURE and HAPPINESS (Story Line Press; the former to be reissued by Red Hen Press), and two collections, A POVERTY OF WORDS (Prolific Press, 2015) and LANDSCAPE WITH MUTANT (Smokestack Books, UK, 2018). Many other poems in print and online journals.