[b]Therapy and Dreams[/b]

I pay a therapist $90 an hour
to say Aaawww… Which is what
I want to hear. And she’s awfully
cute with her little pout and pucker.
So, you see, it’s entirely symbiotic.
The problem with me, she surmises,
is that I’m afraid to get in touch
with my inner child.
She may have something there.

For I have this recurring dream
of a beautiful blonde vixen in pigtails,
hiding Turkish Taffy under a Mickey Mouse
tank top. It’s always hot and humid in my dreams,
so gooey globs stick to her nipples
as she pulls out the candy
and offers me a bite or two.
But its only a dream!, I yell,
as I run frantically for cover
in the nearby bushes,
being but a young boy,
lacking pubic hair,
and frightened of cavities.

In the bushes, I am greeted
by a giant hedgehog, who licks
and licks the clothes
clear from my body, except for my socks,
which are not very tasty, apparently.
And just when I’m getting accustomed
to saliva and spines, the feisty critter
turns into God and fries
the taffy temptress with
a crooked bolt of lightning.
Then he turns to me and proclaims
with booming voice (because he’s God):
My son, where I come from,
$90 an hour is rather steep.
I know a lovely lady
who can set you straight
in three easy installments
of a mere $19.99,
but you must act fast.
At that, he vanishes with a poof,
leaving behind, as proof of his existence,
a stack of glossy business cards
and a few gray whiskers.

For some reason, that’s the point
at which I invariably wake up
and check my pulse, which
is the pulse of a middle-aged man
with a wife who lives 500 miles away,
two mortgages, a boss with perpetual
sardine breath, a cat who misses
the litter box, and a therapist
who’s writing a Masters Thesis
on dreams and hallucinosis.


If only he hadn’t kicked the class bully
in the nuts during lunch. But it was either that
or snorting lime Jell-O and tomato sauce
through a dirty straw in front
of the entire Glee Club.

Let the rest of them dodge that wacky red ball.
Let them choke on dust clouds and Gummi Bears.
There’s something to be said
for lying face down in a dumpster
atop a stack of Playboy centerfolds.

[b]The Poet Inspects Precision Engineering[/b]

It was a lovely morning.
The birds outside were chipper,
my bowels were fine, and I was
about to do something very important,
or at least somewhat creative, until
I unscrewed my precision engineered
mechanical pencil to inspect the ultrafine
graphite and the crafty
Japanese workmanship.

Engineers are so darn fastidious.
Their toaster ovens are shiny
and crumbless. Their microwaves glisten
inside and out. They sweep
the sinewy brown strands
and toe jam from the space between
the foot of the bed
and the polished antique chest,
which is packed optimally with potpourri.
flannel nighties, and a spare set
of metric Allen wrenches.

I, by contrast, do my best
to avoid mysterious, dark crevices.
At night, I wrap my arms tightly
around my wife’s waist to keep
from falling off the end
of the bed into the creepiness.
When my wife is away, I sleep
on the decaying couch in my study,
and imagine that the old, creaking
mechanisms are happy crickets
procreating under a winking moon.

I also eat fat bacon and fried eggs
on buttered rolls, chain-smoke
unfiltered Camels, and laze
in front of the TV all day watching
re-runs of 70’s sitcoms and telethons.
But all that is another story.

Note to myself:
Buy a fountain pen.

[b]Whatever Happened?[/b]

Whatever happened to that crazy old bugger?
You know, the guy who wore a filthy wool
cap all summer long? He had torn, greasy trousers,
and his shirt was held together with safety pins.

One time, I gave him a few cigarettes,
three, I think, and he patted me on the butt
and whispered in my ear, somewhat accusingly,
“Rasputin only eats raw lamb,
and sometimes boiled carrots”.

Last time I saw him, he was fishing
for bicycle tires in the Potomac River.
I was jogging by, and he adjusted his crotch
in my general direction
while giving me the one finger salute.

I suppose now that it’s cold,
he’s living in a shelter downtown,
passing out soap and handkerchiefs
to all the bag ladies who stop by for biscuits,
gravy, and some good, old-fashioned groping.

Every now and then, he stares out
a cracked, dirty window on the third floor
and snorts at the pathetic gnome-like
creatures on the sidewalk below,
randomly bumping into one another
on the way to Hell.

[b]A Poem Written After an Evening of Reading Darwin And the Scriptures, In That Order[/b]

The master magician waved his wand,
And I tumbled from a long, black sleeve,
An ornery five-legged dragon, coughing
Up flames and charred feathers. With a sneeze,
He turned me into a rabid rodent,
Sending his accomplice into a panic,
As she lifted her skirt, and danced a jig
Across the stage. Next, he snapped
His fingers, transforming me into a troll,
Complete with oily facial blemishes
And patches of dark fur in mysterious,
Yet sensible places. And this is how
I shall remain, having sawed my creator
In two, after poking him with a blunt,
Shiny sword, whilst devouring his
bony, but delicious assistant.
But there’s no reason for alarm.
They didn’t feel a thing.
And the only blood spilled
Was my own.

by Richard Jordan (c) 2001
([email]sdjordan1 [at] juno [dot] com[/email])

[b]Author’s Note:[/b] Richard Jordan is a PhD mathematician and also a poet. He currently resides in Virginia, where by day, he works on the mathematical modeling and analysis of the spread of infectious diseases, and by night, he tries his best not to contract any such diseases.

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