And in Legal News, Playing Talk Show by John F. Buckley

And in Legal News…
by John F. Buckley

When? Now. Here I go, hitting my stride, no
longer skidding on the loading-dock diamond
plate, irascible magic beans in my sphinctered fist.

There’s an openness to meaning, a maybe
plum, the hole of a donut, the wind whistling
through a Cheerio, when you greet me on
the sidewalk, passing by on your way to
the courthouse, eyes sliding into the next step
already, tie knotted in neckfolds, wholly
benign sky-blue dress shirt only slightly
rumpled and kissed by beignets, khaki pants
at the ready, creased, ironed, heated to
trotting speed, shoes tapping signals.

I have to go, good to see you. After the rain, chased
by the smell of besotted kittenish keenness,
the edge, the cloud where mischief, moisture,
and cutting collaborate, we run as we must.

You don’t take the pardon from my hand but rush on to judgment.

Playing Talk Show
by John F. Buckley

“Heeeere’s _______!” someone gets to holler,
maybe the boy with the big voice and pinkeye,
who sticks kernels up his nose on the bus
riding home after popcorn-sale days.
Where did his dad go?
And who drives the Corvette in his driveway?
Announce it all, loud kid!

Let me pin this raisin to your lapel, my guest,
like a dead fat fly or a wireless mike.
You can talk into it, croon,
confess all your babyhood dreams that withered
before they bore fruit. If you cry,
I will say “Aw, shoot!” and cut to commercial,
probably one for that powder
the red-stater grandmas all use for their chafing.

(Who’s doing the commercial? We need someone to do the commercial.)

The protesters outside the studio,
which means the younger unpopular siblings
who cry on the edges of the basketball court,
forbidden to set foot on the blacktop
by the quick-pinching security team,
want to watch Barney, but Barney’s at home,
and we are all here, putting on a show of sorts.

Now let’s go behind the utility shed.
Pull down your shorts and say
that you’ll marry me someday,
when this world is different.
I’ll pull down mine too,
all the way down to the ground, if you want.
We’ll be each other’s production assistants forever.


 John F. Buckley lives in Orange County, California. His work has been published in a number of places, one of which nominated him for a Pushcart Prize in 2009. His chapbook Breach Birth was published on Propaganda Press in March 2011.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s