Poetry

Two Poems

Letting This Happen

With a smiling face
the toddler mimics
that cancer cough
slated to have his father
dead by next month
and, although the father
insists that his wife
stop trying to stop
the child, he storms away
with the intent
to make her feel guilty
for letting it happen.

***

Belly Laughter

The divine
conquers
the devil:
even in celebrations
of evil (making
concentration campers
do overtly unproductive
work
like carrying salt bags
back and forth)
belly laughter
is possible.


M. A. Istvan Jr. squandered the precious energy of youth writing papers to get degrees in narrowness—all to become a craven specialist complete with hunched back, a mere reactor trained so severely that the ability to think for himself (without, say, the spur of a book) has been lost. If only he did not know that he was doing so at the time, he would be much less depressed about having squandered a decade on projects for which no appreciation is forthcoming. Unfortunately, he did know at the time. Even more unfortunately, merely complaining about it at the time proved an empty response to such knowledge. Visit michaelistvan.com or pw.org/directory/writers/m_a_istvan_jr_phd