Saturday, May 30, 2009

A Few More Fold-out Postcard Sonnets - 5/30

Here’s the next sonnet in the Fold-Out Postcard Sonnet sequence. Not much to say about this one except that, as I mentioned in the first post about this sequence of poems (which were written at this time of year in 1996), state names are “spelled” as abbreviations but pronounced as the state—TX for Texas (not “T for Texas” as Jimmie Rodgers would have it) & VT for Vermont in this particular poem.

In other news: I’ll be playing my monthly craft fair/farmer’s market gig in Council today from late morning until early afternoon, & I’m looking forward to adding a few old standards to the set list: “It Had To Be You,” “It’s Only a Paper Moon,” & “Bye Bye Blues.” It’ll be a pretty eclectic batch of songs, ranging from the old Appalachian tune “I Wish I Was a Mole in the Ground” to the aforementioned standards, with lots of blues & old country in between. The weather? Fair & hot!

Be sure to drop in for Original Poetry Sunday tomorrow—in case you don’t know, Original Poetry Sunday was initiated by Sandra Leigh of the fabulous Amazing Voyages of the Turtle blog. More on this tomorrow. In the meantime—enjoy the following:


A cigarette drowns in a strawberry milkshake its
last words being Save the last dance for me as the
tumbleweeds waltz a Brahms waltz under a life
preserver orange TX sun May 1988

& Marlowe walks smack into the future into a
telephone booth misplaced in a spaghetti western an
unruly Rorsarch blot smearing the western horizon like
a down sleeping bag with egyptian dreams

But a few things are true at present a slice of
strawberry rhubarb pie drenched in melted vanilla
ice cream a dial tone chirping Waltzing Matilda

& Marlowe growing a little bit older as VT
sinks like a beer bottle in a stagnant beaver pond
whether or not Marlowe actually uses the phone

© John Hayes 1996-2009


  1. Good morning, John.

    Such a sad poem - except for the pie and ice cream, which must have been a comfort. I enjoyed reading the poem, but I'm glad I wasn't there.

    I'll be gone all day, too - Thanks for the OPS plug. I look forward to reading your latest -

  2. Hi Sandra:

    Hope you have a great day, & glad you enjoyed this! Strawberry rhubarb pie would be a comfort under almost any circumstances.

  3. No comfort for me: I'm not a great strawberry-lover. Enjoyed the poem, though, some really great images. Thought: could you have done more with it as a prose poem?

  4. Hi Dave:

    That's an interesting question-- I did write some prose poems back in those days. I guess what interested me about the "sonnet form" for these poems was the whole idea of the turn.

  5. Always the food items to offset the dark tones. I cringe at a cigarette adulterating a strawberry milkshake. This was a bit of a wild ride - except we was drivin' real slow.

    These are some of your best, these sonnets.


    P.S. I forgot all about the Sunday poetry gig. Will head over to Sandra now.

    P.P.S. Just picked up a double cd of early Nat King Cole - amazing!

  6. Hi Kat:

    Glad you liked it. I'm so happy to hear you're going to join in the Sunday poetry fun!

    & yes, early Nat King Cole is fantastic.

  7. This is the first of your Postcard Sonnets I've had a chance to read, but I want to go back now to the others. This was fascinating to read, given the unexpected form and subject. I like! I LOVE the image of the cigarette in the strawberry milkshake. I can see it - may have done it at one time long, long ago. Great stuff. I intend to get over to the Sunday poetry gig and at least nose around tomorrow.

  8. Hi Karen:

    Thanks for stopping by & for your kind words-- so glad you liked it!


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