Poems by Kenneth Pobo


He’s malevolent in any weather,
+++++but when temperatures fire up,
he swings back and forth
+++++for hours, lemonade sweating

in a glass, imagines a ruckus
he could create, the hell
he could raise
and lower.  Upheaval

gives him a buzz
or something close to it.
Today he listens to birds
he barely watches

in the birch tree.  When a spider
crawls on the porch wall,
he thinks he’d normally smash it,
but not now, not after

he swallows a yellow
sleeping pill sun
and drops against
a rickety door of dreams.


Please, no recipes!  I have a shelf
full of cook books, one
heftier than the next, but I’d
have to read and follow directions.
It’s not just cooking–

show me a manual
and I’ll show you a trash can.

My niece Ava begged me
to assemble her pink skyscraper.
I made an excuse,
escaped to a thrift shop.

When people come over
or if I cook for a date,
I hide the food packages, pretend
I made it myself.  Women
in my family say a man’s heart
is in his stomach.  What is the way
to a woman’s heart?

Jewelry doesn’t wow me
and flowers fade.  My heart must be
at the end of a dirt road,

hard to find—I hope you’ll try.
If you do, I’ll cook something,
honest.  Or you can bring
a covered dish, a Stouffers lasagna—

it’s fine, we’ll light candles
pretend northern Michigan’s
winter is Paris,
spring, Cezanne waving.


About Kenneth Pobo

Kenneth Pobo won the 2011 Qarrtsiluni chapbook contest for Ice And Gaywings.  They published it in November 2011.  Also published in 2011 from Deadly Chaps is Tiny Torn Maps, a collection of micro-fiction.  He teaches English and creative writing at Widener University.  He loves gardening but not the ticks that seem to love him.  His favorite living poet is Tomas Transtromer.

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