This poem is taken from Stand 220, 16(4) November - December 2018.

James Warner Two Poems
A Sad Case

When a young acolyte hanged himself
and the family sued, entailing years
of litigation, Paul waned, and turned
to waitering at Tomasino’s.

Then just the few, from better days,
were vouchsafed his guru’s sayings -
whose rasped imprimatur he’d once heard as,
‘Be a Teacher, you’ll go far.’

‘You might open a pizza parlour,’
was in fact what the man said,
as I recall. Paul, in his youth,
enthused. Swept up, as were we all.

Dinner is Ruined

In La Fontaine’s version of Aesop’s fable,
the grasshopper (la cigale),
having sung all summer, come winter
finds nothing to eat. Where Aesop’s
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