Previous Feature: David Spicer
David Spicer has, in pursuit of the word, worked as a paper boy, dishwasher, bottle loader, record warehouser, carpet roll dragger, 11th and 12th grader babysitter, medical journal proofreader—to list just a few. He has the usual poetry wall of his own work, but tries to keep that in perspective.
Acrophobia hinders a lifelong ambition
to erect copper and aluminum towers,
so I placate my stained-glass ego
by inhaling the night air of snow clouds
and aspens, but I eat hamburgers
until this paunch bulges and I can’t wear
double extra-large flannel shirts. My boots
are a size too big for tapping kneecaps
of my underlings. Listen, I love to snap
my fingers, spit Coke at grease monkeys,
and conduct slide shows for savages
in gambling casinos. Okay then,
I concede there are no prophets
serving entrepreneurs and politicians—
the days of pillaging villages and burning
conquered bodies have passed. Alright now,
no more ambushes will occur, brush fires
are all but gone, along with dreams
of inventing unique satellites.
Believe me, I’ve dawdled too much,
the lamplight fades quicker than ever,
and I need to recruit some advisors
and salesmen for new terrains to chisel,
or I’ll sink. What now? I have it:
I’m gonna run for President!
I’ve never slogged through Ovid
or saddled a horse for a foxhunt,
didn’t know my pappy very well
or acquire a mentor, so don’t
think I’m some sycophant who’ll
drink your cognac and celebrate
your victories over a pepper pot
with a berry cobbler for dessert.
I don’t believe in a thesaurus when
I copy edit your quodlibets, though
I do like the aigrette around your neck,
but that doesn’t mean I’ll sing a chanson
or wear chiffon just because you do.
I’ve lived downtown too long to justify
myself or hobble like your stepson
who fell off his skateboard. And I won’t
pay tribute to you with a pantomime
of a birch hanging off a cliff. I refuse
to pray in your cathedral of the self
or compose praises on parchment,
so I’ll leave with no apologia to offer
and hereby tender my resignation.
All Hail! Copies of David Spicer’s first book, Everybody Has a Story (St. Luke’s Press, 1987), can still be found kicking around over at Abe Books. Please, click on the cover image below to learn more . . .