Current Issue Excerpts


it is April

And then everyone came out, and their doggies
snuffling the butt liquors of creation.
The pink ribbons of the worms writhing on the pathways.
And all the little children are running
around and around themselves frothing from the mouth
with joy. Because it is April. And the world
is in drag. And the Word is burst. And God said,
"Let a million pussy willows bust out in fuzz." And, lo,
they did. And He saith unto the baby robin, "sing,"
and, verily, it drowned out the rush hour traffic.
Because it is April. And all of the larvae are squirming.
And the May flies are chomping at the bit,
and even the June bugs are itching for existence.
And let's not talk about the frolicking flowers.
Or the frisky waves jiggling like electrical jumping beans
on the river in spate Or the gazillion needles of the sun performing
acupuncture upon the pate of creation. Because it is April,
and the bud is on the rose, and the fluff is on the bud,
and the dog is off the leash, and every goose pimple
for a thousand miles around stands erect, an honor guard to spring.
And I am rocking on the park bench like a catatonic in heat.
Because it is April, month of prolixity and ubiquity,
when the Lord of all saith (unto nobody in particular) "Let there be,"
again and again and again like a broken record,
and everything and their uncle crawls out of its winter hole.
And, lo, God Himself is astonished, who is beyond astonishment,
except in April, when even He gets giggly, and almost forgets
about death -
but not quite - although for thirty days He toys with the idea,
like a cat with a rubber mouse.

RICHARD SCHIFFMAN's poetry collection What the Dust Doesn't Know was published by Salmon Poetry in 2017.

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