The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Monday

by Gary Miranda

What matters more than practice
is the fact that you, my audience,
are pulling for me, want me to pull
it off -- this next sleight. Now
you see it. Something more than
whether I succeed's at stake.

This talk is called patter. This
is misdirection -- how my left
hand shows you nothing's in it.
Nothing is. I count on your mistake
of caring. In my right hand your
undoing blooms like cancer.

But I've shown you that already --
empty. Most tricks are done
before you think they've started -- you
who value space more than time.
The balls, the cards, the coins -- they go
into the past, not into my pocket.

If I give you anything, be sure
it's not important. What I keep
keeps me alive -- a truth on which
your interest hinges. We are like
lovers, if you will. Sometimes even
if you don't will. Now you don't.


A teacher passed this poem out to my tenth grade English class. I believe it was originally from The New Yorker (could have been published any time in the 1970s through 1981). I saved a faded mimeograph of the poem all these years and for some reason this morning it occurred to me to go find it in my ancient file drawers in the basement. Isn't it funny the things that stick with you?

Landover Baptist 'Two Towers' Review! Landover Baptist is a parody Christian site (Fundamentalists and fans of Jerry Falwell may be offended). Lines like "Peter Jackson intentionally crosses the lines of moral decency by blurring the gender identity of the Dark Lord Sauron" and "the love affair between the hobbits, Frodo and Sam, mirrors the strained homosexual relationship between J.R.R. Tolkien and his English lover, Theologian C.S. Lewis" made me howl.

Well, you already knew that I was going to Hell, right? Click here for Erect Hobbit Penises!

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