Derek Pollard

Found Poem No. 6

                                                  “How Thou Art
                    The Construction and Rejection of


            David Bevington, in his introduction
produces a long but partial list of Falstaffian
discoveries over the years, the “character types
fool, Lord of Misrule, mock–Puritan, picaresque
even longer and less complete inventory of these
resisted any authoritative mantle cast by these
make him nearly as popular and well studied

while Falstaff has remained so resistant to definition


Our Rome





With Jessi Melcer

My father drank. He drank as a gut–punched boxer, secretly, in pain and trembling. I use the past tense knowingly. Father, age sixty–four, heart bursting, body cooling and forsaken. Sister, mother, and me, continuing as long as memory. My father tipping back the flat green bottles of wine, the brown cylinders. Bobbing as the liquid gurgled, he wiped the sandy–haired back of a hand over his children, children familiar with the ballad of the children in the wood.


I am unpacking my library now. Yes, I am. The books march up and down in their ranks, passing in review before a common disorder. Crates have been wrenched open, the air saturated with piles of volumes that are seeing daylight again after two years. A stillness settles in my heart and is carried to my hand. It is certainly not elegiac. But there is another kind of seeing that involves a letting go, a rejoicing. Procession through the great house, procession through our own muddled country: ballad of my children, song staved with twine.



If P, Then Q