Switched-on Gutenberg Vol. 6, No. 2
Wish You Were Here

Smokehouse conspirators. Shadowy commercials
for the smashed. Rovaniemi Saturday night.
Someone’s waiting for the Americana
pizza. Someone else is bent over two lines
of antihistamine, snorting, coughing, snorting
again. (Give him credit for resourcefulness.)
That one’s hands are clenched tight as frost, that other’s
nodding her head in time, like windshield wipers.
All of us sitting at this black table
understand the need for sin and the price
of penance. The Goldrush is over. Morning
brings fog, steam rising off the Kemijoki.
But the only gold left in Lapland is in September
birch leaves. In the leaves, and in the beer

Copyright 2004, David Starkey

David Starkey teaches in the MFA program at Antioch University-Los Angeles, and is the author of a textbook, Poetry Writing: Theme and Variations (NTC, 1999), as well as several collections of poems from small presses, most recently Fear of Everything, winner of Palanquin Press's Spring 2000 chapbook contest, and David Starkey’s Greatest Hits (Pudding House, 2002).


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