After Reading James Tate in '98 ('cause poets spost to read)
by Charles Kesler

I am looking for inspiration.
After an hour of reading James Tate
the sky falls in my face.
I don’t want the sky to fall in my face.
I don’t want a tree to bark at the sun,
or moon, or at dogs that pee on it.
Just be a tree and leave me alone.
Why I search the surrealists
I do not know. Does the sky,
a tree, a bark or a dog know?
Spelling dog backwards is god.
Ho! Ho! Ho! Like Santa Claus
and subordinate clause
and inordinate desires
and fires that explode from the loins
of 16. I once wrote that way.
My first love has proof. Poof.
Time is gone. I am gone. You
are gone. So how’s the inspire
ation? A nation of nin com poops.
Oops. Don’t betray your ignor
ants. Call an exterminator,
the wife says, and get this guy
back to re-al-i-tee.

Copyright © 2021 by Red River Review. First Rights Reserved. All other rights revert to the authors.
No work may be reproduced or republished without the express written consent of the author.