A Connoisseur’s Distress

Johnmichael Simon

When in distress with poetry and my muse
I all alone some scholarly journal choose
where ancient soul foods are bandied back and forth
by modern mimickers and plundered for their worth

Of lush originality, then dissected and repackaged
in fashionable guise as some stringy stew that cabbaged
and flavored with dubitable new ingredients
are dished up with simulated cordon bleu expedience

Delighted, all the epicures then smack their lips
and taste and chew the pot du jour and quip
and quote from Greek and Latin through implanted teeth
each in his own pomposity, striving to bequeath

Some long lost meaning, shed a new found light,
disclose the author’s real intention, set the record right;
revealing that Jack and Jill or Ipsy Wipsy Spider
had some politician dictating nuances beside her

My head all spinning, I put these tomes away
return them to the library, ignore what those scholars say,
their words of wisdom I place back on the shelf
then rumble round my kitchen mind and re-invent myself

Johnmichael Simon has lived in Israel since 1963.  He has published four solo books of poems and two collaborations with partner Helen Bar-Lev.  His poetry has been awarded many prizes and honorable mentions and he is published widely in print and website collections. He is the chief editor of Cyclamens and Swords Publishing.


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