width=61 height=87> Voracious Verses
Winter / Spring 2013


Ian Ganassi


River Birch

A butterfly is a leaf with volition, just as we hear the canines
Away off in the difference. I meant to say distance.
ďI cross the street when I see a dog coming.Ē
That was the line that got me off the jury on the dog bite case.
The wicked flee when none pursueth. The smell of decay seeping
Through the brilliant colors as we raked them up.
Thereís too much to say so nothing gets said.
But it gets said well. If there were a way of getting around it
We would have found it. Make plans, take a walk. But walk where?
To what end? Iím bored already by all the available walks.
Or looked at the other way, one walk is as edifying as another,
For any purpose. Or, again, Everywhere there is
Has everything there is to look at. But thereís always
A road on the other side. Get ready, get set, go try
To figure out what it was you were supposed to do
About the family mystery. Maybe he was in on the deal
From the beginningóthat would explain a lot. So would blackmail.
The problem is the lack of a solution. A seven-percent solution
For instance, the rock left out to dissolve overnight
In the rain on the picnic table. He loved it and thought it
Ridiculous at the same time. Un bacione:  I know itís a big kiss
But it always sounds to me like the name of a pastry.
A big black Lab leaping into the air to catch snowballs,
The snow spraying on impact, a happy dog. 
Itís not any old darkness that surrounds us,
But the darkness of death. The echoes among the silvery leaves
Of the birch, a river birch, though there was no river.

© 2013 Ian Ignassi 


The Lost Key

The littoral accomplished itself, imperialistically speaking,
And if it was time, it wasnít time to do anything in particular,
But we had to do it anyway, because we could or because we had
Nothing better to do. They ate their tables on the shore;
The prophecy fulfilled turned out not to be so dire after all.
But the Furies were very pissed off. E.g., later, she said,
Those types of shoes are bad for your feet. The pigs waiting
Patiently for the bolt pistol to end on a spit in a backyard in
Hoboken. Itís not hard to see that something is broken. But what
Is there to do? I mean, what isnít broken? Itís my feeling, man.
And he was right. To be studious was the key, but I couldnít
Find it. Still, the drummer persists, or subsists: ďAnother job
Well done,Ē by a pariah or several, despite the stage fright.
Meanwhile, standing to in the horse latitudes, the doldrums,
One of those ďmagical connectorsĒ to which she objected.
She spent over twenty years writing twelve poems, which was very
Hip guard of her. Horace would have approved (though Bobby Dylan
Might not), but she hadnít read him. Nor was she obliged to.
Anyway, the summer is finally quiet, and I like it like that,
The calm after the storm. Unless Iím just in the eye, which is
A distinct possibility. Does the eye of the storm see
The ground swirling round and round? Then a door flew open
In the mystery novel she was writing on a dare, her next project.
Riding around in a cop car, she even did the research, more power
To her. In the attic style had gone time out of mind.
The accordion wrung its neck in the hokey Italian-American
Joint, but it was better than running into them in a dark alley.

© 2013 


Ian Ignassi's work has appeared in numerous venues, including Octopus, New England Review, Sawbuck, Ploughshares, Skidrow Penthouse and The Journal, among many others. Images from an ongoing collage project with a painter friend of Ian's can be found at thecorpses.com

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