Maxwell’s Poetry Corner

By Maxwell Redder

Accordion Highway

From my window: buzzing
highway traffic slows as the sun
lowers. Head lights and break lights
suck out the last rays, proudly
displaying their eminence along the road.
The screaming red streaks blend
with submissive yellow ones like an opera
singers vibrato. Their passing
hollows out the night
as would the ocean’s pull a crab hole;
a momentary draw, then refilling
with the next wave.

From my window: accordion
highway traffic spews heavy pollutants
which collect like colonies of roaches
on the houses beneath the bridge,
adding a smoky film
to the driveway cracks.
Light jets from side-mirrors
and windshields, brightly smacking
my loyal cabinets along
with the eyes of cursing drivers,
yanking slurs from the throats of god-
fearing people and stagnant the same.

From my window: taunting
highway traffic quickens as brightening rays
rise with my coffees steam.
Tattered shoe strings dangle on the carpet
like an abandoned cat toy
reminding me of the sullen Van Gogh
painting, A Pair of Shoes;
ready to walk with a tired friend.
Emanating light binds me to life like
the way writing ties me to a chair:
the way a job ties me to a city;
the way I struggle to leave.


Buddha and the Cat

Into the abyss my glances went
past the last rock of cliff.
Like a mystic’s magic ball the mist
lifted and swirled forming images:

a mermaid shook off her scales.
Flying fish molded from the pivots
of their curves. Satiated tails,
flapping like palm leaves,

swarmed as if tricking a predator
by melding into a choreographed mass.
Their falcate bodies spun rapidly
producing a tornado. Zipping

from the heart of the mist,
objects were pulled into the twister.
Proportions ignored; a temple stood
as tall as a rearing cat.

The pulling lasted months, slowly
diminishing the fog as all earthly
objects paraded into the bottomless
innards of the cyclone. At last,

a barn cat depleted the mist.
Belching a brave mustard color,
the tornado vanished. There, in its place,
laughed Buddha and a cat.



A grumpy frump threw
half day old spoiled meat
onto the chopping log ‘cause it sat too long.
The thumping axe startled chickens
grazing seeds and worms by the fence
with their stumbling chicks.

The meat became ground
up with kernels and oats recycling
pork into pasty stew.
The stew became new food,
the pigs became clueless cannibals,
the spoiled became used

To feed the next batch of meat.

A witty biddy threw
scrimpy salvaged parts
onto charred metal grates of the grill.
Sizzling meat startled chickens
skirting over pros and cons
while arguing custody of a couple eggs,

one sat loftily next to the other
which, cracked vividly, seeped
becoming spoiled.
Part was eaten
part was dried and chopped
apart becoming fodder

To feed the next batch of meat.

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