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Bill Roberts

At the Old Poets Convention

At the Old Poets Convention
This year we elected
A new Heroic Poet to lead us
Into the uncertain stanzas ahead.

It was close, Edgar Allan Poe
Edging out Allen Ginsberg,
Whose rants most of us thought
To be tiresome, predictable.

Time to return to Nevermore,
The tintinnabulation of the belles,
None finer than Annabel Lee,
Or so quoth the raven.

Oh, this next glorious year
Should be like the good old
Days, days, days, days,
Days, days, days.

I saw thee once, Edgar Allan --
Once only -- years ago.
You've returned to the Haunted
Palace, old time entombed forever.

My Love Affair With Pepper

It made no sense to me why
my mother would ruin
a perfectly good slice of cantaloupe
by dousing it with pepper
until the flesh turned black.

That was then, this is now.
Now, with age, I've added pepper
to my repertoire, always fresh --
ground, to season a salad,
crust a grilled steak, flavor pasta

coated with tomato-based sauce,
sprinkle liberally on fried eggs
and the side of grits, even dust
lightly the peanut butter I smear
on my toast -- it adds something!

And, yes, you guessed it -- I have
also graduated to grinding pepper
over cantaloupe slices till
the natural color turns charcoal.
I am, after all, my mother's child.

©2008 by Bill Roberts

Bill Roberts is a retired nuclear weapons consultant who hopes to learn someday that all WMD in the world have been scrapped. His poetry has appeared in well over a hundred online and small-press journals over the past thirteen years. He lives lazily these days between Denver and Boulder with his wife of fifty years and two dogs who refuse to be trained. He'd rather have been a ballet dancer or an opera singer.

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