What I Learned From A Shark
I swam alongside a great white shark
who flapped his gills like an Italian
carabinieri to follow him in to the dark,
murkiest waters I have ever been in.
I knew he had a layer of mirrored crystals
behind his retina providing him with acute vision.
I trusted him to know the way since his sense of smell
was so keen, it had earned him and his fellow sharks
the name of “Swimming Noses.”
Following him into the darkest places
taught me to never be afraid of the dark.
It’s full of unimaginable euphoric surprises,
like laughing all over again watching
old Charlie Chaplin films, the thrill of a ride
on a roller coaster, and the best memories
you ever had of being loved like a work of art.
My Conversation With A Squirrel
I walk along the Dunderhook trail
and get confronted by a squirrel
who looks at me eyeball to eyeball
and shouts, “I know you — my student,
you were the best student in my class
at Iowa on hermeneutic exegesis.”
What are you doing being a squirrel?
“You don’t have a choice, I’m afraid.
It’s a rat race in the park, running up
and down trees hunting for food,
almost anything will do when you’re
hungry all the time, and nobody’s shares.
It’s a dog eat dog world,
and speaking of dogs, they’re the worst —
one crunch of your skull and you’re dead meat.
Before the restaurants began recycling,
you could always find something tasty to eat.
Recycling now makes it almost impossible to survive.”
After he scampers off, I wonder why he returned
as a squirrel in his next life?
Then I remember our conversation after class,
having a beer together at Miller’s Ale House.
When I asked him about his hoped-for reincarnation,
he replied, “I just want to run a whore-house,
and screen every applicant for their sensual expertise.”
A Failed Romance
When he touched me,
I turned into water — optimistic that his love
might devour me hook line and sinker.
After spending the night between my thighs,
he left me to drown in water over my head.
He never looked back.