The Playhouse • Robert Lietz

     The summer morning's full of it, that horse-drawn
roofed wagon, and the vegetables
you might describe in your own English, bringing the women
out again, into this circus neighborhood.  But
who could resist the seasoning sparks and succulents? 
Who could resist the snows, if certain, still
a long way off, or the kids at play on curb-less city streets,
when you are one of them, kneeling at marbles,
or running house to house in fishbowl helmets, tossing
your taped newspaper football
half-way up the block where no one's parking, with
fathers away
or returning late from shit jobs, with cash
in hand, as the lords
and ladies had demanded,
a few days earlier.


     I think how we napped or played to nap, and rose
to afternoons made dull
by news of surgeries or golf outings, news of the hearings,
night after night of that,
whispered into evenings, unable as we were to feel
our ways around the issues,
with the waning moon for complement or Playhouse 90,
shaping the stillness
as kids dreamed, of Seoul maybe, or sliced meats
with tomatoes,
so many bewildered parallels, and not so unlike
the moonlight's own,
what with the police, or the armies, skilled
and already
outnumbered, whatever the moonlight
to be, over     how many    


              Who could have dreamt wifi,

     or kits, or lenses put to witness, boots traipsing
soot-crusted snow, eyes
eyeing the shade-side brick or windows scolding us,
opened wide as perishing,
and proof enough of our belonging, of our origins,
you could say, unfolding
all around, according to whose orders, to such schedules
as dreams are figured on,
and accents, in motion, as these were, from
the first platforms, the initial
reconstructions and resisting, in the photo-spreads,
the re-enactments,
which, in perspective, might seem worlds, with
fruits to share, and
bowls to spoon on the fresh corners,
this could be all,     and


Robert's poems have appeared widely, including 
Antioch Review, Carolina Quarterly, 
The Colorado Review, Epoch, The Georgia 
Review, Mid-American Review, The Missouri 
Review, The North American Review, The 
Ontario Review, and Poetry. He's published 
several collections with L'Epervier Press.