Maureen N. McLane

Today’s Comedy
July 21, 2011 McLane Maureen N.

Today’s Comedy


Why Dante in summer?

Why not?  The doctrine

of purgatory’s not more strange

than nanotubes or Tang.


I used to know

its ins and outs.

What we’ve abandoned grows

higher than trashheaps


in Naples.  My love

canal’s clean and my heart

in my breast

is right dressed.


No guide led me here

but Virgil and everyone

I ever met, in woods

books dreams in suburbs


the city the farm.

Marcus Aurelius

took a page

from the town mouse


and his country cousin.

The lesson of fables

is mutable, their structure


not.  Something

must change.  A hero

must range in a land

he also unwittingly


charts.    If many die

not everyone can.

Odysseus must reach

if not Ithaca


a farther shore

and the little zygotic blip

you once were

must enter the world


& its pure gore.

Maureen N. McLane is the author of two collections of poetry, Same Life (FSG, 2008) and World Enough (FSG, 2010). Her newest book is My Poets, also from FSG.