LIKE A FISH

Poems by Daniel Crocker

ISBN 0-9723224-7-7


CONTENTS

I STILL LOVE YOU, MISSISSIPPI
I Could Be
South 55
Cathedral: The Poem
The Night I Met Larry Brown
Murder at Hattiesburg, Mississippi Wal-Mart
To the Woman I Accidentally Objectified This Morning
My Late Nights
I Just Wanted to Help
One More Time

IT'S COLD IN MICHIGAN
Black Squirrel
How to Write This Poem
Never Got That Dog Fixed
What 'Possums Want You to Believe
Why It's Not Funny Anymore
falling off
i

EVERYTHING IS FALLING APART BUT THE MCRIB
What it Takes
Threw My I Ching in Mississippi
Sestina McRib
What Spider-Man Dreams of
and etc.
He-Man, You Smarmy Bastard
if i was magic

THAT OLD MISSOURI MAGIC
Where We Come From (ver. 2.0)
Lovers
stigmata
Oscar the Grouch
Yr.
Camping in Missouri
Old Tires
The Greatest Love Poem Ever Written
Ashley's Poem


ISBN 0-9723224-7-7

"Daniel Crocker isn't in the habit of calling things beautiful, Hell, neither am I, but I'm just going to put it out there, with Like a Fish, Crocker has shown his readers their fair share of beauty without ever having to drunkenly whisper its name. He writes about every day experiences in a way that anyone can relate to. His ivory tower is a Mississippi flophouse held together with tar and dreams. He's a strait shooter who gives it to you plain and simple. In short, his words don't have a stick up their ass. In our current lonely culture, what more could you ask for?"

-John Dorsey, author of Sodomy is a City in New Jersey


"Daniel Crocker has the heart and the chops, an innate ear for language and the gift of good storytelling. He is one of those writers accessible to all of the diverse crowds he writes about--the denizens of the trailer parks, as well as the academies. To say Crocker is an important writer is an understatement; he's a hidden gem in American letters."

-Nathan Graziano, author of After the Honeymoon and Teaching Metaphors


"Crocker's gritty yet tender poems expand beyond the topography of the south and into the landscape of the human experience. He candidly displays life's three-dimensional ups and downs that most people perceive as a mere two-dimensional surface. This collection confirms why Crocker is one of my all-time favorite poets."

-Rebecca Schumejda, author of Falling Forward


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SESTINA MCRIB

When god pulled that bow of bone
from Adam he couldnt have seen this
coming. Or maybe he could. They say he
sees everything coming. I dont.
At least not until its too late.
And now the McRib

is back. Two dollars. Its not really a rib,
thats the fast one. This boneless
gift used to be sloppy, out of control. Lately
its act has come together. This
fist full of little problems. I dont
want to sound sentimental, but Ronald, he

must have wept, how he
must have wailed when the McRib
was torn from his side. Lonely doesnt
touch the lack of it. The missing bone
so long a part of his flesh. This,
you said, sauce on your hands, isnt real meat, and later

that half-eaten sandwich tempts me. Its late,
you are asleep, I am drunk, he,
God, not Ronald, would deny me this.
I eat anyway, devour it, the McRib,
and the bone-
bleached gaze of the moon doesnt

make me feel guilty at all. I do not
feel guilty at all. Its too late
for that. And of Adam, and his lost bone,
I wonder if he
missed it? Reached for it at night like the rib
was there only to find this:
             this
empty pillow, this car full of empty wrappers. Dont
dwell on it much. Think of the McRib.
Even now when it is getting late,
try not to think of the way he
must have felt, a sack of meat and missing bones.

I saw this coming too late.
Dont let its lack of bones fool you.
Everything is falling apart except the McRib.



HE-MAN, YOU SMARMY BASTARD

You're not fooling anyone. You drug
half of us out kicking and screaming.
Ram-Man, Extendar, Fisto,
you have to be kidding me.

I see the way you and Beast Man
look at each other, the glances that pass
in battle.

Don't you have enough going on?
What with ruling Eternia
and the way Man-At-Arm's
mustache feels fatherly
against your cheek.

Who wouldn't want to see you
soaked in rain water?

Me. I have a fucking skull
for a head. No one wants to hang
out with the kid who has a skull
for a head. Let's put it this way,
I didn't get invited to many parties.

What choice did I have then
but to be evil?
The Gods decided on a whim I would be your
eternal foe? Losing, always losing.
Could it be that simple?

Fuck you and that stupid cat you rode in on.
Let me into Grayskull, you sleek, shirtless barbarian.
You beautiful bourgeois man. Let me into
mother-fucking Gray skull, you lovely bastard.



BLACK SQUIRREL

The first thing I notice about Michigan
are the black squirrels

We have one in our yard
My wife, Margaret, feeds him popcorn
three times a day
Shes fallen in love

Missouri squirrels are plain
If from the city, mostly bone
If from the country, fat

It came this close to eating from my hand
then you rattled home and ruined it

There it was
a sun spot
hissing at me

Margaret cant get over it
     the color so dark
Im getting worried
and the squirrel
     with its hissing
scares me

I miss the dishwater gray squirrels of Missouri

     those ugly old things

They are plain
common enough
scavengers
but they have resilience

You have to hit them square with a car to kill them
     even then, like gray hairs, they double
A Missouri squirrel will not get close to you

As I child I ate them
even the meat was tough
but we were poor, tougher

When I came home from work today
Margaret was feeding them
One ate from her hand
a communion
Id never be part of

She waved to turn off the car
I pretended not to see
The squirrel sauntered away
on its fat black haunches.




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