2 Poems  

By Jim McCurry  


The postcard's blue dolphins 
leap from the carefully scrawled text 

of a friend's fine print--a famous poet 
gone to the Tropics with my ex-, 

and another lady priest, platonic. 
He pens, "I'm basking  in 

recognition.  Skin-diving? 
I'm hooked!  Love, Bill." 

The sun tricks my vision--cantaloupe, 
rose.  It splatters the snow 

with blue shadows, pulp and seed. 
As the shadows and I retreat, 

we march past mailboxes, 
Illinois homes, whose 

white paint says, 
"Relax, be decent. 

Nothing is forever. 
Everything has limits." 

I have nothing 
to add. 

LETTER TO ROSE You take a fishing hook now--this tiny silver anchor, its barb filed smooth. What is it like? You favor the turn beyond measure, the term itself, of the line, the momentary flick, crimson, the sounded word. You take the way a famous poet responds to praise: he is just. He is a miniature mirror to his culture. Deflecting reflections of narcissism, without descending to false modesty-- he never actually said it was undeserved. You momentarily miss the leaves that have blown off the sumac, red in today's wind, a piece of the italics of astonishment, the way I treasure this blood beat, this pulsing guppy eye. Do you hear that snap, that hook, the end of the line's measure? See it now, stuck here in what's left of this bullish, bleeding ear.

Since this time last year, 50+poems by Jim McCurry have appeared, or will, in the following publications and zines: Alba, Annetna Nepo, Big City Lit, C/Oasis ("Stravinsky in Iowa" and "Untitled,"), Drought, Eleven Bulls, Identity Theory (where he now has a blogger website to post poems as well as the regular "la vie poeme" section), poems Niederngasse, Pig Iron Malt, Rio, Snow Monkey (editor Kathryn Rantala is preparing also to issue an eBook "Gustatory in Nature," including two of his restaurant poems), Tryst3, Zacatacas Review, and Zuzu's Petals Quarterly. Fish Drum (editor Suzi Winson) will publish an excerpt on death, haiku, and Issa from his fall 2000 journal.

Jim McCurry is among thousands of poets opposed to war on Iraq; he has three pro-peace poems on line at the poetsagainstthewar website.

Contact Jim McCurry at: jmccurry@sandburg.edu

February 27, 2003
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