My Latest New Favorite Poet: Ned Balbo

Dearest Bloginistas,

My latest new favorite poet is Ned Balbo. The below poem (from American Life in Poetry: Column 533) reminds me very much of my childhood vacations with a person whose name I shall not mention to “protect the innocent” :D.

Let’s just say she (and her “accomplice”, who taught her, Artful Dodger-style, in the ways of “procurement”) was responsible for my being here on this earth (and her accomplice was responsible for her being here on this earth…I now have the “Circle of Life” running through my head, LOL: “Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba” :/ ).

The woman in question has, allegedly, QUITE a collection of various dishware, table accessories, cutlery, etc. from the varied places we visited on vacations. It’s rather cool, actually (sans the alleged petty theft, that is!), and a veritable “King Solomon’s Mine” of restaurant ware, hotelware, and kitsch.

It seems that Mr. Balbo had much the same experience:

The Sugar Thief

If it was free, you taught, I ought to grab it
as you did: McDonald’s napkins, pens,
and from the school where you were once employed
as one of two night shift custodians,
the metal imitation wood wastebasket
still under my desk. But it was sugar
that you took most often as, annoyed
on leaving Dunkin’ Donuts, pancake house,
and countless diners, I felt implicated
in your pleasure, crime, and poverty.
I have them still, your Ziploc bags of plunder,
yet I find today, among the loose
change in my pockets, packets crushed or faded—
more proof of your lasting legacy.

My favorite lines are the last ones:

“I have them still, your Ziploc bags of plunder,
yet I find today, among the loose
change in my pockets, packets crushed or faded—
more proof of your lasting legacy.”

Especially the “Ziploc bags of plunder”, because they were pirates in a way, weren’t they?

The full article can be found by clicking here.

Click here for three more of his poems over at the Valparaiso Poetry Review

Enjoy! 😀

Jamy

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