I was pleased to be notified today by the Poetry Chair of the Annual Pewaukee River Meadfest that my poems will be featured in this year’s readings.
There beside the parking lot of the apartment building where his girlfriend and her sister live, where the mighty Pewaukee slows to a respectful pace, Gordon Weaver will read five of my poems, by way of declaiming spring in Wisconsin. I am told that Al Learst will attend.
I mean, yeah, it’s just my dad and his friends boozing it up on a Sunday afternoon, but it just sounds so cool. An honor I do not take lightly, knowing what I know about his lifelong devotion to literature and criticism.
Thanks, Dad. I hope they like ‘em.
So I have this friend—an engineer. He told me once that he avoids revealing his profession on a first date because past experience says it will preclude a second. And I have another friend—a poet. She wrote a poem about first dates and used the term “yawn-worthy engineer” in the final line.
Clearly, the world (or maybe just the world of engineers) needed a poem in defense of engineers as dating prospects—a position I wholly support. So I borrowed a textbook from Friend #1 and set about it, step-wise.
Not unlike an engineer.
how to enjoy an engineer
Step One: Hold
Step Two: Wait
for the shy smile
to break into a wry humor.
Step Three: Understand
that analytical is kissing cousins with attentive
and that his knowledge of leverage and sliding friction
Step Four: Imagine
the pleasure of a methodical
approach to the curvilinear
structures that make up your body.
Step Five: Believe
that the heat in a body is useful
only when it communicates
with another body.
Step Six: Be still
while he traces the flow of current
along your bones, producing a harmonic distortion
from your lips.
Step Seven: Watch
how torsional stiffness
modulates the rolling of bodies
as they negotiate curves.
Step Eight: Ask him
about the desirability
of vibration in hard steel
and elastic bodies.
Step Nine: Invite him in
to manipulate all the degrees
of your freedom at the point of coupling.
Step Ten: Instantiate
the law of action and reaction.
This poem first appeared in The Best of the Royal Bean, 2011, Main Street Rag.
This past summer at an open mic I hadn’t been to before, an audience member asked if she could find me online.
She wanted to read…my…poems.
After I stopped reeling from the flattery (that was two months ago), I resolved to carve out a little digital place for myself where I could collect links to my published poems, give a little link love to my favorite open mic venues, fellow poets, and journals—and to see what might become of it.
This is that place.
I don’t figure to make a blog of it, but it could happen.
If you want to read my poems, I would be honored. If you come out to an open mic to hear me and my fellow performance-poet-junkies read, please say hello. If you want to read a little more about me, there’s a page for that, too.
Thanks for visiting.