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Guest Poet Varda Epstein


My Tree


A skeleton lives in my PC,
I tried to give it flesh,
The keyboard speaks in frantic tongues,
But flesh wonít stick to bone.

Lithuania lives in my PC,
(But cousins say itís dead),
Its coldness seeped inside their bones,
And ate them all inside.

My grandfather lives in my computer,
He knew me at aged five,
When I turned six he knew me not,
Though he lived thirteen years more.

Israel lives in my computer,
It does not let me in,
I have a passport it is true,
But the doorman keeps me out.

I borrowed a jacket,
Then they let me in,
I feasted on olives and bathed in sun,
But no, itís just a dream.

The skeletons dance and twist and turn,
They dance the danse macabre,
They know not blood or flesh you see,
Only young flesh tempts their palates.

They do not know that they are dead,
Their God is dead, their senses numb,
They think that rather I am dead,
And tsk and shake their heads.

Perhaps they still have shreds of flesh,
The blood it beats but does not course,
Through calcifying channels,
It pools but does not flow.

I type their names and enter them,
I want to give them life,
But on my tree remains a shell,
A chrysalis hanging grooved and empty

June, 2002



Varda Epstein's questions:

1) Should I stick to using PC instead of varying the language with the word computer?

2) Does the part about my grandfather get to sentimental and ruin the tone?

3)Is the final line impactive enough or does the poem end on a weak note?



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