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Poetry by Jim McCurry



The Machine


Like swimmers, swimming, i would be as the water
(who has no memory) as friend, grateful for now.

I was permitted to see the cerulean blue sky,
the rose horizon, the inky lavender squirls
and squibbles of cloud in the rose.

Posh suburbs, eve of a conference on dyslexia.
I am sitting in an all-night Denny's. I stare into
the glittering cosmopolitan poshlost.
A god watches me eat. Yet God is not
the oriental man with the young Negro girl
in the opposite booth. Exclusively.

God? I look across to the Red Roof Inn
where I have registered for the night.
Darkness glittering with traffic and the lights
of commercial services and shops,
what it lends itself to. God? What do I know?

Nada. I pay my bill, to gimp-limp the crosswalk
to my TV, to turn on to a Spanish language
movie about another shootout
in the desert: a gringo, a lizard, a burro,
a hot sun, a bobcat to attack the burro,
to sleep.




About the Author


Jim McCurry has taught at Carl Sandburg College since 1980.

Once, in the 70s, he published work by Doug Blazek, Dan Raphael, Jack Collom, Yusef Komunyakaa, Christopher Middleton, Marilyn Krysl, Stephen Ruffus, Arlene Zekowski & Stanley Berne, and other poets in Delirium magazine.

In '99 he received the Gerard Manley Hopkins Award from Writer's Forum for three poems. He received a first from outside judge Allen Mandelbaum in the Univ. of Denver poetry competition, sponsored by the Academy of American Poets (1977), and a matching grant from Illinois Arts Council for a poem in Farmer's Market (in 1991).

More of his work can be found online atAlba, Big City Lit, Cyber Oasis, Drought, Eleven Bulls, Identity Theory, Niederngasse, Snow Monkey, Tryst3, Zacatecas Review, Zuzu's Petals Quarterly.