It's Not Easy Being The Card Catalogue Linda Thomas Poetry

local_library It’s Not Easy Being The Card Catalogue

by Linda Thomas

Published in Issue No. 27 ~ August, 1999

Morning to midnight, fingered
by lunatics in love with my subjects,
Globulin before Glockenspiel,
by students deranged daily
by my arrangements, Garcia Lorca
under Lorca, Garcia Marquez
under Garcia. Oh for a guide
to cultural idiosyncrasies
under C for crazy.

It’s the writers I love, the ones
who do not eye the bullseye but
love the arc of the arrow.
For them, I loosen my stacks,
let the card lie back like a lover
against the row, make room
for a note, a comment, a lingering
gaze, provide small moments
of whimsy: Pickle
after Pickford, Mary. Sponges
after Spock, Benjamin.
The Fountain of Youth after
Ford, Henry, Fortas, Abe,
Foster, Vincent, Foucault, Michel –
all dead, see?

Humor stays me long afternoons
when jealous husbands, clowns,
house painters, and chefs
slide their eyes left and right
then rip a card from my rod.
Could I but scream, the librarian
would be here in the slam
of a drawer. Cops, paramedics,
lawyer as in Law not long after
Laurel and Hardy.

Could I but shift my venue,
eke out an L-shaped space
elsewhere, I’d elect residence
in a private study where
my sole lover longs to know
the latitude of desire,
the density of a saint’s flesh,
the carbon content of love.

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Linda Thomas is a native Californian, where she teaches writing at a community college. When it comes to her poems, she says, "I don't have a sense of humor. Hence, the poem I am sending to you was a surprise to me. But poems are always a surprise." She has been writing poems, stories, and essays for over 25 years, and currently writes a monthly column for Tapestry, the ezine of Women Online Worldwide.