YOU ARE INVITED

I have to compliment you,
after all you ignored me
for four years in high school,
condemned me to the outcasts,
the geeks, the losers, the barely
tolerated and then only when
the Headmaster was watching.

I didn’t go to your parties,
no one without an invitation
ever dared, was left to the
clubs no one wanted to join,
but I have to say I was
truly surprised, shocked almost
when your letter came,
reminding me of our great
years of friendship, our
camaraderie then, but
regrettably I must decline
to contribute to our class fund.

PIXEL THIS

I have it on good authority,
supposedly, that the internet
will not he the death of me.

I have my sincere doubts, and
regardless, it has turned my world
on its head more than a bit.

In high school and college
I knew that a thick envelope
was an acceptance, a thin one

a letter telling me this or that
Ivy League school had a large
number of qualified candidates.

And as a poet, a thin letter was
acceptance, thick a return
of my work to trash or recycle.

Now both worlds are driven by
computer generated emails, and
I know the computer rejecting

my work in a kindly, if grammatically
inaccurate email never understood
the subtlety of my imagery at all.

NAME IT

Aunt Tzipporah hated her name,
detested it really, came closer to the truth.
“What the hell were my parents thinking?”
she said, “like being Jewish in West Virginia
isn’t going to be hard enough.
On a good day I got away with being Zippy,
but you try spending your Junior year in high school
hearing “Hey Zipper” or having some jerk
come up to you, cigarette dangling
from his lip and saying, “hey, Zippo,
got a light?” and you can guess
why getting out of state to college,
any college, was something I wanted so badly.”
I told my aunt I fully understood,
and she smiled, “I guess you do.
It couldn’t be a party going through
life with the name Shadrach Shamnansky.