Slobs

by Kenneth Pobo

Walk in their living room,
trip over cat toys, slip
on newspapers. Jeff means to gather
the many Sports sections that pile up.
There’s a crossword puzzle to do.  
Jerry whines and says “Please
pick up after yourself,” sounding like
his mom telling him to clean his room
in seventh grade. Jerry leaves 45s

on each table, Brenda Lee’s
“Is It True” stained by coffee.  
When they go to bed, the papers 
and records don’t miss them.
They have orgies and bake sales.
Jeff sometimes dreams of a planet
with not a single rock. Jerry
dreams little. He waits for one
that’s so beautiful that It might 

kill him. In the morning
the paperboy pitches the paper
against the door. Jeff takes it in.
Jerry puts on the coffee maker,
pulls out a random record.
Bill Anderson. “If You Can Live With It
(I Can Live Without It).” Sun glints
off of the marmalade bowl. A kiss
and two engines running.

Walking to Shannon Lake in Wisconsin

by Kenneth Pobo

We park near the road, walk a mile to the lake.
This year the clear cutters have been by.
Stumps, faces with gashes.  It used to be
cool and quiet.  Now it is still quiet,

funereal.  We talk about how we’d love
to see lupines, a blue to cover the death.

Not long ago tribes lived around
this lake.  When we go into town a wooden
Indian stands before the welcome center.
Across the road, Knockers Bar and Deli.  Finally,

we reach the lake, blue water
pulling the sun under wet pebbles.
Last fall’s leaves cover the trail.
Ice had a home here only two months earlier—

we walk in what vanishes.


———
Kenneth Pobo has a new book out, prose poetry, called The Atlantis Hit Parade (Clare Songbirds Publishing House). Forthcoming is Dindi Expecting Snow (Duck Lake Books).  His work has appeared in: Atlantis Review, Amsterdam Review, Mudfish, Hawaii Review, and elsewhere.