Tuesday Poem

If the River Was Whiskey,
If I Was a Duck

If our Phrenes, when fusty, could take the waters,
Head to Baden-Baden, play the tables and come
Home fresh, or, infused with saffron, spritzed with anise,
Return as cocktail-drinking cocktails; if the World
Wide Web was Roxy Music; if we were Eno
Seated at a VCS3, helmsman of time’s
Own ship, ever drifting into port, then yeah—I’d
Dive to the bottom too. But they’re not, and it’s not,
And we’re not, and only a god can save us, not
Cybernetics or Gold Bond Cream. For we are the
Bomb, not in the sense of cool, as we used to say
Or still say ironically, but The Bomb, the pearls
We sold regained, only now they’re sad peppercorns
That pull us down like bottles falling into front-
End loaders at 4 a.m. But things hold fast, sure
Us, whether through analogues or discretely, that
Existence is not just some hemispherical
Container filled with drupes, but life, the voice of Bing
Crosby, patience, yes, a true bowl of cherries, a
Question ripe and there as William Williams’s plums

by Robert Farrell
Narrative Magazine