2 Poems by John Grey


you’re in your element
Venetian cristallo
Philippe cocktail watch

when your fingers take to
the electroplated canteen set
you’re also in an Edwardian nursery
cuddling the Jumeau bisque doll
with the long long face
or the plush Steiff teddy bear with growler

in the eagerness of your Chanel day suit
that ancient pink stone
you drop me in the present

the present can’t contain you

you join the Chinese
blanc-de-Chine Dutch family
you sit at the restoration oak refectory table

so what am I?
chopped liver?
or merely modern inconvenience?

I’m jealous of a dancing sailor
shuffling forward
at the insistence of your winding

I can’t prize you away
from the mantel clock
with the pewter face

I am flesh and blood and now

and that gets old in a hurry

but not old enough apparently


Guy gets off his black motorcycle.
No helmet, long gray hair, white stubble,
leather jacket of the thousand rusty zippers,
faded eagle on the back,
pants tight enough to handle all but his gut,
strides into the diner, legs wide,
so as not to wound his crotch.,
sits up at the counter, legs spread even wider,
doesn’t bother with the menu,
orders the special with a pot of coffee,
thumbs through the newspaper
somebody left behind.

So what if it’s yesterday’s.
That’s what day it is.

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident, recently published in Orbis, Dalhousie Review and the Round Table. Latest books, “Leaves On Pages” and “Memory Outside The Head” are available through Amazon. Work upcoming in Lana Turner and Hollins Critic.