by Charles Troob

come closer, muse
perch on my shoulder
sit a bit and whisper
whisper little hints
at pitches just low enough for my ear
my good ear the left one
the one I depend on
in crowded restaurants
to keep up my end of the chat

speak a little clearer, muse
I don’t want those long Latinate periods
you donated to Milton
even a complete thought
is supererogatory
in these days of prompts
and free association
a little strum or throb will do

or flick a notion
into my cerebrum
then down my fingers
to this page
about a handsome youth
like the ones you handed off to Cavafy
to mix with three parts myth and one part vinegar
or an asphodel or plum or blackbird
anything but the sound of my blood
rushing hopelessly around my cranium

I don’t need you muse for that

are you there
are you there

I’ll call back


Charles Troob wrote these for Sarah White’s poetry group. Occasionally he gets lucky and something good comes out.  Enjoy!