Peter Finch

Little Mag

Spend three hours
addressing envelopes.
Bic exhausted.
Towards the finish
the hand finds itself
totally unable to complete the
tight circle of a letter o.

The mags go out like ack-ack.

In exchange I get misprints
highlighted, protest, left topher
off his name, no comma, word missing,
poems, two renewals, one cancellation,
a shaky essay on the work
of someone I’ve never heard of,
a pair of sandals, a dead fish.

At the post office I have a
deal where they stick the stamps
on and I pay.
“Too much bad language,”
says the supervisor with a hat
speaking to me as
if I were a martian.
“We have women here.”
I make a note.

In the pub I drink
to wash it all out of me
but the landlord’s got
a new one can’t wait.
It comes at me across the pump
handles like a singing telegram.
Crap can’t tell him.
Have another pint I smile.
Pretty full I say.

Tomorrow the library
abuse in the bookstores
A bag of post like a 
sack of kippers.

Dear Editor
I enclose 38 poems about love.
My friends say these
are better than anything
else they’ve read.
I would like to buy your
magazine please send a
free copy.
I will pay for one
when I’m in it.

I enclose
Here are
I am sending
Please find
I submit
Could you
Will you
It is important that
I hope 
I must
I have to
I’m the best

I don’t bother usually
but these poems of mine are
so well put together that I
read them twice after 
writing them.

You are the way
You are the path
You are the light
You are the last beacon
in this verbal wilderness

I have faith
Help me

But I cannot.
Poetry is short on miracles.
I send a rejection