At the Pub with the Museum Staff

By Robert VanderMolen Robert VanderMolen
As if  anyone has the desire    . . .
Vickey trailed off, pouring another lager

There'll be nothing left
But fur and bone, as my lawyer once explained

To my ex, she resumed, tapping a long cigarette
On the bar. My, you're a bit snarky tonight

Said Luther. Maybe you need a change of  venue,
A beach with your breath on it

Oh, she replied, nodding towards the far corner booth,
These writers are so obnoxious

I wish they'd find a new place to complain.
Ha, said Hillary, they wouldn't know a good story

If  it bit 'em in the butt. Plus, added Vickey
There's always the lurking danger

One may launch into a speech on human nature.
I'll back that, said Rick (who, when animated

Would lick his index finger and sweep it back and forth
As if quickly turning pages of a catalog)

They're just a bunch of spare parts clogging a garage.
Hear, hear, exclaimed Hillary, let's give it to the boors

And literary whores.

How a bonfire magnifies everything. Or that early
Skift of snow across brown meadows

When you still haven't canned the peaches.
Settle down Rick, said Luther, this isn't Chicago

Indeed, Vickey countered, this town used to be known
As Little  Jerusalem by certain parties in the old days

All the churches. And hypocrite politicians,
Added Luther. Well, it's all downhill from the north

Where wanness began its mission, continued Rick,
Waving his empty pint. Jesus, you can be a bore, said Vickey

All heroes become bores eventually, instructed Hillary

But did you know when Rick was born
He looked like a little worm. His aunt told me —

Luther, studying her profile, said
I was a little worm too

Source: Poetry (October 2007).


This poem originally appeared in the October 2007 issue of Poetry magazine

October 2007
 Robert  VanderMolen


Robert VanderMolen lives and works in Grand Rapids, Michigan. His latest collection of poems is Water (Michigan State University Press, 2008).

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Relationships, Friends & Enemies, Activities, Eating & Drinking

Poetic Terms Couplet, Free Verse

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