A friend of mine writes poetry. I am often startled by his keen perceptiveness and sensitivity, and by his way of seeing the world we live in—so differently from the way I do, so I asked him if I might post some of his work on this website. He agreed without qualification or hesitation. That's how he is. The two poems that follow are his.
By James Arthur
29 October 2008
Sonnets on coupon savings by my wife
Come down upon my cluttered head and desk
descend the Spirit to engage the days
of secret charms more subtly picturesque
to capture love in economic ways.
Too thick I am to think of cents as love
Too busy with an amorous theme in mind;
To ever condescend to grace above,
And praise the little schemer's recent find.
But what is this? Redemption from the fall?
A kind of bickering debate about
The market valuation of us all?
To pay full price? This makes her more devout
To save, be thrift with coupon challenges,
Is discipline; the friend of savages
To watch her work is quite an education
Retrieving value from the Sunday Times.
To make the deal for her is satisfaction
By cutting coupons in exchange for dimes.
Though seldom seen, I see her manner clear,
This merchant ship goes out upon the sea
And brings in food from regions far and near;
With poise of self, élan, and dignity.
She, like the Savior, saves these common days
And cultivates a mirth to season life,
That by her sacrificial love she plays
A truer note, a nobler part, a wife.
On snowy days she laughs and has no fear;
With lyric nerve she plays the financier.
By James Arthur
25 September 2008
And I feel this dread; ache, twisted, and dead.
Shall the CellCept cause the premature departure? Shall I perhaps dwindle off via a lymphoma? Is it a sin to amount to nothing? Is it shame to expire life's last breath with face down in broken glass…alone?
What form comes the grace? Shall I admit the sin that triggers fallen and collapsible prospects of the future and success?
Shushed by the busy clones, the iterative clowns, whose committee gives birth to committee-think and slowly dies the advance of the faithful. And it will all be well thought through and voted on and communicated through a memo of distended colon-like smiles. Then I will be subtracted with time on my hands to truly luxuriate in the pain that is mine because I was willing to lay down my life. But the Church does not see, it does not stare. It prints a program.
I do not meet the criterion. Forgive me.