a poem in the newspaper

he is mostly nonverbal
drops the paper suggestively
on the dining table
just in front of me

when there’s no immediate reaction
he sidles around
talks about something unrelated
takes the paper in hand

uses his artisan thick fingers
to deftly flick through
page by page
then points to the small square of text
before stepping away
to another part of the room
still nonchalant in his discussion
of possums and potatoes

the hens

she says

why did you write it
so short
you usually write longer

why is it so short


maybe now
you’ll write more

as though my failure to provide
a steady stream of output
across her reading table
represents an absence of effort

a dereliction of my responsibilities

as I’m leaving he speaks

down the pub said to me

I didn’t know franky wrote poetry

and I told him
you don’t know everything
do you

very smug
sounding proud now

she says

but why did you write it so short

you should write longer
next time

© Frank Prem, 2009

3 thoughts on “a poem in the newspaper

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