ditch,

the poetry that matters

Louie Crew

Louie Crew has published extensively; has edited special issues of College English and Margins; has written four poetry volumes Sunspots (Lotus Press, Detroit, 1976) Midnight Lessons (Samisdat, 1987), Lutibelle's Pew (Dragon Disks, 1990), and Queers! for Christ's Sake! (Dragon Disks, 2003). His papers are collected by The University of Michigan.

       When I Had Done It,

 

 

"Bow Back did it," I allowed,

  as guiltless as my phantom.

 

I could more reasonably have said,

     "Great-great Granddaddy did it"

if I had known chronological mythologies,

     had charted my chromosomes

like an astrologer's ancestral log.

 

Perhaps in an earlier life, I,

     a cat, back arched, shrieked.

Perhaps I stalked Notre Dame.

 

"Bow Back did it," I repeated.

     My parents seemed not to believe.

"Bow Back did it, really."

 

     Their smile was not nice.

I knew that they had not seen him.

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

Ferryman's

Epitaph

 

 

He

shunted

mediocrity

in

a

l

l

 

w

a

y

s

--

treated

shocks with glee.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Accustomed

 

Eula and Bubbah streamed past the white faces

only to discover no black back of the bus.

Although the impatient driver pointed to the two vacancies

just behind his own seat, the two spent $50

of their 1968 welfare check getting a neighbor

to drive them the 120 miles, free from what they felt

had to be a Klan plot to get them in trouble.

 

Four of Aunt Hattie's mother's 500 freed slaves

worked in the kitchen fifty more years.

They always knew not to take little Hattie's plate

until the child properly laid her knife and fork

across the finished meal,

and carefully folded her linen napkin.

Still Hattie refolds, a paper towel now,

sets plasticware astride her plate,

and carries the lot to the disposal

down the hall of her retirement home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What's a Neologism for 'Eschatology'

 

                                 o

                                O o

                                 n

                                 l

                            '20 y 1

                            n    v  i

                           i     o   n

                          s      t     3

                         A       e    so  little

                                 d    d  lead  i

                               i   n  d  lead  e

                              1    9  i  lead  t

                              8    4  her  party

                           ....    ...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poem Lula Gaines'

 

Substitute Maid Whispered

 

As She Fetched the First Plates

 

from the D.A.R. Luncheon

 

 

 

               Is you Quality

 

              Or does you stack?

 

 

 

 

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