Graham was at his best
Behind a camera and, best of all,
Roaming around the countryside, in quest
Of bare trees, say, their limbs an inky scrawl
Against the crimsoned west.
His mother cooked and sighed
For him, to her the sorriest of strays,
Who either feared or couldn’t find a bride,
Till, stricken by a terminal malaise,
She, of a sudden, died.
Now he ate cheese and bread,
Searched the garden for death to photograph –
A ravaged rose, the skin a snake had shed,
A fallen fledgling, glad on its behalf,
Being beyond all dread.
How casually they met
(In line at a drugstore), how quickly wed.
Now, he ate okra stew or veal blanquette,
While she was unintendedly misled
That the house was his, free and clear of debt,
Until she learned, by hap,
Of older sibs, each of whom owned a share
And, mad at having strayed into a trap,
Stalked away from the supposititious heir
With, ‘God, you piece of crap!’
Peter Austin‘s poems have appeared in the USA (The Atlanta Review, Able Muse, Blue Unicorn, Barefoot Muse, The Raintown Review, The New Formalist, Fourteen by Fourteen, The Hypertexts, etc.) as well as in Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Israel. Of his second collection, X J Kennedy (winner of the Robert Frost award for lifetime contribution to poetry) said, “I Am Janus is a controlled explosion of strong and colorful stuff, and it’s a joy to read a book in which every poem is splendidly well-made and worth reading.” Peter is a Professor of English (retired) from Seneca College, Toronto, Ontario, CANADA.