Wednesday, December 29, 2010

One Tree Bridge by Dennis Greene

I had the honor of reviewing One Tree Bridge by Dennis Greene, and it is now in print! Here is an excerpt from my review:

"Greene manages to give [hard truths] to us with a beauty of form and sound so delicately balanced that they go down easy.  The reader feels the burn of the poems but can’t help consuming more because we desperately need the knowledge. One Tree Bridge is the simplest possible metaphor for existence on our world, yet the message inside the poems is larger than that. The birth and death of an individual, of our species, are simply two stops on the road within an infinite universe. [It] explains that so much of what we think we know about the universe depends on our perspective."

If you'd like to read the whole review, or buy a copy of the chapbook, please visit The Lives You Touch Publications. 

Friday, December 24, 2010

Mrs. Kringle's Lament

They said we’d only get an inch of snow
but when I wake it’s covered up the road
and slush has pulled some branches down so low
my favorite tree looks like it might explode.
I trudge outside with gloves and scarf and salt
to promptly slip and fall upon my rear
before I even reach the curb. “Assault!”
I bitch, then freeze as something licks my ear.
I scoot away, my heart up in my throat
and think:
a zombie! when the icy slop
slumps to the side like puke on glass. A coat
so cheery green it makes me want to pop
out both my eyes emerges next to me.
I groan and pinch my nose. I know that face.
Those bells. That burp. He’s grown a sparse goatee
which doesn’t quite enhance the scraggly lace
sewn on his cap. “Oh, you again!” he sneezes,
grabs my sleeve as though I’ll help him up.
Yeah, right. I dodge his drunken grasp and seize
his pointed, chilly ears. He drops his cup.
I just don’t care. He thrashes, tries to kick
but cannot get away. “Where’s the deer?”
I snarl. I wish that Santa’d get here quick
before his merry crew drinks all the beer.
“You think I’d rat out my best friends? Oh please!”
he cries, then vomits just as someone’s head
ducks out of sight behind the frosty trees
like Samurai Jack, but drunk. And wearing red.
“I know you’re there, you might as well come out,”
I call, my spirits sinking to despair
as I catch sight of antlers and a snout
crouched low behind my car. I swear.
This happens every year. No joyful bells
for me, oh no. Instead, delinquent elves,
escapees from St. Nick’s gift wrap cartels,
crash in my yard to sleep. “Show yourselves!”
I yell again, not hoping for too much.
Surprise, surprise, who waddles out? The Man.
Kris Kringle. Santa Claus. I blink and clutch
my head (I drop the elf). “What’s the plan?”
I ask. I hope he knows what’s happening.
He “ho-ho-ho’s” and sways a bit, then slips
and suddenly I feel the bitter sting
of cognizance: he’s drunk from feet to lips.
I sigh and drag his jolly ass to bed,
park the sleigh, coax Rudolph to the shed.
The elf I tuck into an extra room.
The beer, I’m sure, is gone, and none too soon.

Happy Holidays!!

© 2010 Christine Klocek-Lim