Howard Good


In Excelsis Gloria

my daughter thirteen comes home
from school her dark eyes darker
than usual as if her irises had crystallized
because the chorus has been practicing
singing that song in excelsis gloria
for the winter concert she says no way
can she it weirds her out to call jesus
lord savior the singing teacher
when she told him shook his head
deal with it he said and there it is
like the dead bird xylophone our cat
leaves by the front door as a gift
oddly without a mark of violence
on it or any blood just small enough
to fit into my pocket and carry away
if i wish a soft weight a terrible reminder
a secret love note scribbled in haste

Question & Answer

what's your favorite season my daughter asks
i love summer she says before i can answer
we are crossing the bridge the hudson below us
summer is over when i look past her face
so like her mother's the trees erupt in flames
another month they will be black skeletons
spring's my favorite i say pretending interest
the taillights in front glowing rubies of blood


Howard Good
is a professor of journalism at SUNY New Paltz and the author of nine books, the latest being Educated Guess (ScarecrowEducation, 2003). Good's poetry has appeared in numerous journals and e-zines, including Stirring, Rose &Thorn, Conspire, Wilmington Blues, Midstream, and 2River View.
 

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