Let Me Tell You How It Is

Carol Borzykowski

One of these days I'm going to get myself a muse.
Strong, fearless, with a sense of humor
maybe a biker chick
with a tattoo
or two.
Eyebrow pierced, and a navel ring
I'll stare at as I contemplate life.
She'll sit Buddha-like
belly full of possibilities.
I'll say
"Hey, how about a love poem?
"Sure, nothing to it."
"How about one on death, the X-files,
a dead cat in the road?"
There'll be no subject she can't handle.
"Poems," I'll say, "Are life."
"Lighten up!" she'll say.
We'll both laugh.
Later, at night, after glasses of wine
she'll explain the source of life
in a poem. How it's like a pool
of brightly colored swimming fish.
"The trick is you have to sneak
up on the buggers. Just crawl up on your
belly, slide your hand into the cool water
and wait. Don't get lost
in the color and movement. Wait
for the nibbles on your fingers.
It doesn't hurt much." She'll hold
out her scared bitten hands to me.
"When you feel a nibble, grab
that sucker, right behind the gills.
The living, breathing heart
of the poem. You'll feel it gasp
and struggle. Understand that to keep
it alive the poem has to breathe in your pool
of ink
fountain of words
great lake of a blank page.
Just let it go
it will swim, shimmer, live.
See? Nothing to it!" She'll smile
at me again and I'll say,
"Hey, how about a Sunday Afternoon Poem?"
She'll laugh and say
"Go fish!"

Next Poem Previous Poem Contents Cover 2RP

The 2River View, 1_3 (Spring 1997)