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Michael S. Collins – Ⅲ

Jump Cuts Around the City of  Job 




Yes, time is crowded.

Our stories wash

Over each other

Just as waves do:

–“Is it true

he’s in prison for strangling his wife?”


–“But Kenny never laid a hand

on me in his life,

doesn’t believe in hitting women.”


–“He drove that jeep for better or worse

right through the minefield,

and like the pauper in the bourse,

he didn’t buy shit, not a fleshwound

and not the farm, no way.”


–“So—we’re the world’s policemen? Why not?

These guys are good at killing office workers.

Let’s see if they can rise from the dead or not.”


–But as for the afterlife, illogical.

Physical law is all that really lasts.

Look for God in the regularities

That hitch the sun to the plants,

To the planet feeding on its light.”


–“And yet it’s odd that beauty and war echo

each other so: belle, bella, bellum:

Helen knew it.”


–“But God’s voice from a fire?

God then is nothing but superheated


–“And do you need more proof?

Look around.  That office tower,

That baseball billboard,

The hooker walking up to that

S.U.V.  Longing made everything you see.”


Horns of the traffic jam drown out

Her “$10 for a blowjob,

25 for pussy.” But the deal

gets done, and the traffic

rolls on into the city of Job.