Paul Vangelisti, p.3


Instruction is the middle class disease
sporting coat and tie as a lad of ten
in the hotel lobby. Or a lad of ten
or the thigh of a frog and not the leg,
luring ambition to the colors of thought,
coloratura of once upon a time
refrigerator recanted in middle age.
Whoa, says the porcelain pig, who’s sorry now
the lily’s been plucked and it’s well-known
where ladders start, say at the end of the bar
or on the back of a napkin or where
desire is lying perpendicular to
the funny valentine that was her elbow,
please, let me buy somebody a drink.
It’s historically improbable that we,
lifting my glass, understand each other,
hot brazen thing ailing so tenderly.
Or too much like taste’s blague dispensation
replayed at least every ten years or so
before the uprising. Wind beneath our wings.
Oh well, says our pig, the lily was a tree
and the CIA invented abstract
expressionism, so who cares about history
except where it amplifies the present
to elbow out some greater generation or
maybe even further the spread of bowling.