James Reynolds: The Muse Of Prune Poetry

The generic stuff won’t do
because my bloviating muse
demands the artisan brews.
He . . . she . . . it
(I don’t know which)
is no service dog.
It’s a different kind of bitch
with a pedigree that’s more
buffoonery than ancestry.

And me?
I’m more beggar than beneficiary –
told to appreciate what is given me.

And what do I receive?
At night when I go to bed
it grabs gold and silver prunes
and chucks them at my head.
Or it nuzzles next to me,
wrapping my thighs with freezing feet
and snoring through a nose
that looks like rancid Swiss cheese.

But when I’m on my knees
begging for inspiration
(and the only thing I see
is that wedge of Swiss cheese);
when I pray for a phrase,
word or half a thought,
a couplet or participle
(it could dangle or not).
When I start to cry
because I don’t know why
this alcoholic muse is mine,
it frowns and gives me a frosty reply:

“How’s this for a thought?
Poets get what they deserve
and that’s what you got.”