Sunday, May 22, 2011

Leora Fridman


forethought agony
bell that ringing

is not an illness
but reduces anyway
tell on, teller   forthwith

a grandfatherly preacher
faded into the normal
blackguard of the town

no one saw him slide
to the stairway or begin
to disallow      any visual

representation of his
speeches, crowds of this
size play basketball

out of boredom when
they want to in
church             a receptive

leader would have
spoke to them again

the preacher just lived
up higher in a bedroom
& door           flapping hands

at the windows when
menfolk went too low,
he set a tonal

standard  by which trust
crowded        the disease

they knew was coming
trapped stature
                    so ho-hum

Leora Fridman is a writer, translator and educator living in Massachusetts.  Her recent and forthcoming publications are included in The Awl, Shampoo, Denver Quarterly and others.  She is an MFA candidate at UMass-Amherst.