Keynote Address at the Cliché Symposium

Ladies and gentlemen,
I’ve got an axe to grind
with all of you.
In a nutshell, this is
a cautionary tale.
In this day and age
it’s either sink or swim.
Suffice it to say I’m
cautiously optimistic.
Make no mistake,
don’t get me wrong,
it’s a broken system.
But quite literally, I’m
turning a blind eye and
basically calling it for
what it is –
a last-ditch effort to quell
the perfect storm of hot-
button issues. Or so
the thinking goes.
But, contrary
to popular belief, I’ve
got a face-saving
compromise in the works.
I’m giving it all I’ve
got, one-hundred and
ten percent, for sure.
My new normal has
sparked debate
and has raised more
questions than answers.
In case you’re wondering,
withering criticism by
grizzled veterans who rose
from obscurity has more
often than not shined
a spotlight on this
firestorm of controversy.
And I am not alone
on this long journey.
The same old sad story
applies to each and
every one of you.
And so, in summation,
I say to you,
this day and every
day to follow:
you have to love yourself
more than anything,
and always, always, always
pray for peace on earth. It’s
as easy as 1-2-3. Now,
get the fuck outta here.

 

© 2017, Eliot Jacobson, Ph.D.

Slaughtered Stalks

Corn ghosts linger
over slaughtered stalks
in Elmer’s field, where

thirteen deer, songless, bound
out of the neutral zone
of the land trust.

In foliage-free turns
of the wheel, no antlers
betray prize kill

as it jetés on a bullet line
toward muted woods
and crouching fluorescent terrorists.

You know to deflect
from my car. If I were
my neighbor, you’d go home

a dozen.