Transparent Words - Poetry


Gary Blankenship


Song of Myself #27 - Reformer

Song of Myself #28 - Excursion



Song of Myself #27 – Reformer

 27.  The reformer ascends the platform, he spouts with his mouth and nose,


Listen to him

outline his accomplishments,

a litany of exaggerations and self- importance

and try to remember

the last time he had been of any worth -


His campaigns to ensure

we did not drink fructose laden beverages

smoke machine-rolled cigarettes

eat too much of the wrong foods

(and all foods are wrong)

Clark Gable was not shown bare-chested

in front of Claudette Colbert


He will counter

with when he rearranged the nursery

lobbied for shorter recesses

in order for his fellow students

to have more time to learn

picketed the university library for stocking

volumes whose pages included

I Sing the Body Electric

and its wrestle of wrestlers


When he senses your disbelief

his efforts to change what could be changed

were of even marginal value

his nostrils flare

mouth purses

voice rises an octave

and he reminds you

“we must curtail these liberties

to defend our freedoms.”




Song of Myself #28 – Excursion


28.    28.  The company returns from its excursion,


Fueled by cheap beer

and the bravado only young men have

they drove off in search





and found highway signs

as yet unriddled with 22 holes –

they took the “danger curves” as a souvenir -

and a road sign named for Bobby’s family –

also taken but lost and recovered

when they overturned

south of the river


and found the crib

over the ridge named for Sam’s family

but only Raf had money for the girls

and he had other plans for it


and found a girl

not much younger than they

pulling weeds in a turnip patch

but she saw them first

and ran home to tell her pappy

and turn loose the dogs


and found a case of Bud

under an oak in the state park

put there for a gang of browns

who jumped them

and left Jimmy with a bloody ear


and found a cane cutter’s kid

to help turn the car back on his tires

and for a dime hired him

to guard their booty

as they explored shanty town


and lost a shoe



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