Poetry May 2012

The Residency

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I love my cabin and my writing table,
my bright lunch pail, the mudded path. Then drinks
begin, say, five-ish—Stoli or Red Label—
and keep on till we’ve worked out all the kinks

in our disheveled psyches. Back at home,
it’s hard how people don’t know I’m an artist.
I feel as useless as a garden gnome.
They think I’m ordinary: that’s the hardest!

Here, they understand the mess that’s me,
and everything about this place confirms
what I’ve known deep down since the age of three:
I operate on slightly different terms

than businessmen and lawyers and the crowd
that trades and dickers, hires and fires, and when
I tell the world my tale I tell it loud!
I must get down to breakfast before ten.

The cook, with every egg he scrambles, knows
that he is giving me fresh fuel to fashion
new Himalayas, draped in dazzling snows,
of imagination backed by skies of passion.

David Yezzi’s most recent collection is Azores (2008). He lives in New York City.
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