Two Poems by William Tinto






Awakening in Poesy Town

This morning I rose from my bed,

as if from between the sheets of the New Yorker,

the world random as free verse.

Today the dog walkers are at their charges’ behest,

poetically pooping their pooches

balancing take-away coffee cups and canine crap.

Passersby smile tragically, the mailman nods ironically today

we’re all on one end or another

of a conjunction-there’s no punctuation

You might assume Gertrude Stein sits behind the bus driver

who challenges his riders by making no full stops no

one can ignore anyone and anyone can ignore no one.

I am a molecule in a stable compound

converted overnight to animism,

my age and fears transparent as a watch crystal.

A dog pauses to have a smoke with the bus driver,

the mailman studies a withered bloom.

Neighbors fling open their windows and shake their rugs,

waving the flag of the same beloved homeland

obverse and reverse.


Poem Kills Capitalism

This verse does the work of

two ordinary poems

for about the same price.

Nice. If you’ve read all this way,

I’d say that’s ten percent down.

You’re already invested-

these words are product-tested

go ahead – finish it up – make it pay.

By the way, this bonus line costs you nothing –

there, don’t you feel better?

Read, digest, repeat.


William Tinto writes: I am a visual artist who has written poetry, mostly in secret, since elementary school. I am also a self-professed grammar geek and (very) amateur etymologist. Poetry challenges my sense of rhythm and sound—I think of composing verse in the same way as composing a painting, or in the way a musician takes a solo. Arlington is home for my wife and me.

Image: Carol M. Highsmith [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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