20101002

Baudelaire Shepherd

THE TEN LICENSES

I want the doghouse owned by the hound next door,
the one I let be whipped, right after I dug
the garden up to steal an old bone, but before,
when he was at the vet, I fucked his pug,
and three months since I knocked off the family cat.
And if my dead mom, the rangy old bitch herself,
could join me on a Sunday walk, or a piss,
Christ, with what joy we would consecrate our own scat
to our dear Lord Anubis, now sitting on the shelf,
the god that lets us get away with all this.

Eleanor Higgins

ALCOHOLIC TENDENCIES

In a Brooklyn dive the bar­tender comments to a pimp,
“Your prostitute sure is a nervous one. What’s her name? “
“Well, I call her ‘Whoretense,’ fella. What’s it to yuh?”
Just then, five Arabs and five Jews come in together.
The barkeep sneers, “All uh you’s get out uh here!”
“But why?” queries one puzzled middle easterner. “Ain’t it obvious?”
he replies, “The situation in here has become untenable.“
“Yeah, like the settlement of my tenth divorce,” comments a millionaire
sipping a martini. “The damages for that one were extensive,”
Then with competence, bartend shoves all ten toward their tenement.

20101001

Jan Dederick

ten's a line of ones if you think about it.
ten tens side by side? hundred square, don't doubt it!
ten hundred squares stack up, a thousand cube to become
otherwise known as ten times ten times ten to some.
extend this line of thinking, and ten-cubed then defines
a point! and ten thousand-cubes lined up, a line!
place ten lines of cubes in ten by ten array
a hundred-thousand square, or ten to the fifth, hooray!
point, line, square, point line, square, life in three dimensions.
ten hundred-thousand squares stack up to a lovely pension.

John Rowe

I'M COUNTING ON

I'm counting on ten fingers, I'm counting on ten toes.
When there's something to smell, I count on my nose.
I'm counting on my lucky number, this time it's ten.
I'm counting on my future to come again and again.
I'm counting on this poem to win the big prize.
Everyday I count on a chance at any wonderful surprise.
Look: a flock of ten birds flying, sky so blue.
What can I count on? Can I count on you?
Come count with me, we'll have ten times the fun.
Oh maybe this crazy beautiful life has only just begun!

Mari Werner

TENANT OF THE TENEMENT

Attend to the tenant of the tenement reading Tennyson. Forgotten
but not beaten, she is yet tenacious. Tender are the
words she’s written in extension, like wisps of life distended
on tenuous tendrils. Tenth floor neighbor, the Tennessee tennis player
contends to have gotten tenure in the often rotten tendency
of life to tend to the intense. The tensile strength
of a tendon might portend a move away from tennis
perhaps to tenpin or something intended to lighten the tension.
The tenor ten floors down extends his voice to the
Tennyson poet, attending the intentions of the tender tenement tenant.