Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Issue Forty
Spring 2016
Helen Wickes

Green plate on his belly, he’s fingering the yolk,
nibbling the crisp edges and whining
about geese. Long ago he loved them

in migration: Honduras to Canada and back,
loved the beauty of genetic intention
that V formation of winter coming, or
spring is here; hearing the insolent honks

he’d cut the tractor engine, light a camel,
speak in full, rhapsodic paragraphs about how
even the stupid geese anchor a year.

But then, he decided that the great Clockmaker
in the Sky had let the eternal gears run amuck,
turning his own sweet fancy to other galaxies
throbbing at the edge of time—

that was Dad’s rhetorically declaimed thought
about why the hell those geese
plopped their fat-ass selves down on his acres

for the long haul, soiling his asparagus patch,
harassing his cat, obliterating the passage of seasons,
belonging to him, not to time, not to the year.

About Helen Wickes

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