UNDERGROUND VOICES: POETRY
MICHAEL SHORB

RUSH LIMBAUGH SMOKES A CUBAN CIGAR,
ALONE ON THE BALCONY OF HIS FLORIDA MANSION


He drags himself out
into the sunlight, everything
harder to move around
these days, all heat
tending to make him sweat,
snips off the requisite
chunk and fires
lean butane flame
into the tube,
which yields,
crackling,
gushing the aroma
of Caribbean fields,
damn commies have to make
the best cigars, he snorts
out loud, frenchies
the best cognac,
chinese all the steel
and electronics,
japs and germans
all the cars,
arabs all the oil.

Well, what the hell?
He smiles, face clouded
by sweet cuban smoke,
the radio’s good.

And he smiles again,
thinking of radio.


SEX WORKER

She came to think
of it as a factory
for flesh, an assembly
line for penises.

She started young,
her skin still smooth,
her vital parts
tight and new.

At some point,
it was like milking cows
on a farm, the harvesting
of sperm cells into
their polyethylene gaskets.

At one point, on a rainy
afternoon, after the third
john of the day, all
sense of romance or pleasure
simply evaporated,
suddenly, like
a bursting bubble.


Michael Shorb's work reflects an abiding interest in environmental
issues, history, and the lyrical form, as well as a satirical focus
on present day trends and events. His poems have appeared in over
100 magazines and anthologies, including The Nation, The Sun,
Michigan Quarterly Review, Queen's Quarterly, Poetry Salzburg
Review, Commonweal, Religious Humanism, Shoofly, Rattle, Urthona,
and European Judaism, as well as such anthologies as A BELL
RINGING IN AN EMPTY SKY (Mho and Mho Works), TO BE A
MAN (Tarcher Press), NAMES IN A JAR: 100 AMERICAN POETS
(Hood Press), UNDERGROUND VOICES: DRUGS, GUNS, AND
CRAZY DETECTIVES, and (upcoming) THE GREAT AMERICAN
POETRY SHOW 2, and "On The Mekong" (short story) in WAR
IS ALL WE KNOW (Diverson Press).







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