Issue 3:2 | Poetry | Patrick Carmody
Three Poems by Patrick Carmody
an ice bag resting between a sofa cushion and my calf
is a friend who stays hushed when I yowl in dispute
though i may run miles to find myself, plodding
across earthen mole-veins in the fields, or
over recycled leaves & limbs in the underbrush, or
down summer highways riddled with grasshoppers,
no comfort abounds
but when my legs and lungs discreetly whisper
GO HOME AND HANG UP YOUR SHOES,
and it comes time to assess disrepair,
the ice bag wisely stays put
and confuses the hairs of my legs
and tense underfibers, forging
a cool understanding of cause
i see you, little cat, coveting the spot
under the yellow-warm lamp where i have
kicked up my feet. and i am no different,
when i tarry by that mansion with the two
garages, three purple/white brick stories,
and picturesquely clipped hedges.
i move my feet away and
your indignant eyes gouge, pummel me from
having second thoughts —
and i am no different, when i yank the worn
leather steering wheel to claim a fleeting
vacancy in the turning lane.
but then you sit there, reluctantly turned
rear to me; and the coy feathered furs of
your back, crescent-opened glancing eyes,
and constantly hind-cocked ears, reveal that
you aren't like me at all.
Could you see your reflection in the taxi
cab's water-spotted panes? Its eyes glimmer
with envy (maybe wishing it could be you)!
You are the handsome metropolitan commuter,
ever clad in black,
bouncing briskly down the entrance steps
into the greasy subway, umbrella retracted.
Clingy tourists gawk at you from their seats
("Native? Important? Where will he go?"),
but then abashedly glance away,
if or how much
they look out of place.
You vanish anonymously into the business
district and a barrage of numbing sleet,
hailing indifference to the still self-
concerned tourists you're leaving behind.