David McGimpsey: One Poem

I WAS ALWAYS TOLD A POET SHOULD ONLY PUBLISH ONCE A YEAR, ON THE QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY AND ON THE SUBJECT OF THE QUEEN’S BIRTHDAY

A government program seeks to leave poems
in hospital waiting rooms so patients
might read them and begin to understand
there are worse things than diabetes.

When Seamus Heaney passed away, he took
his “Seven Secret Words that Rhyme with Horse”
to the grave with him. Our rented horse-drawn hearse
just clopped away, Canadian cloppe après cloppe.

Editions of Gwendolyn MacEwen
where the word “love” is purposely crossed out
and replaced with the word “Kahlua” –
are those still considered erasures?

Show, don’t tell. Show everyone in Mimico
the kind of mustard-colored active wear
one only sees in the best golf magazines,
the kind they used to have in waiting rooms.

 

DM PhotoDavid McGimpsey lives in Montreal and is the author of five collections of poetry including the recent Li’l Bastard (Coach House Books) which was nominated for the Governor General’s Award.  Named by the CBC as one of the “Top Ten English language poets in Canada”, David’s work was also the subject of the book of essays Population Me: Essays on David McGimpsey. A PhD in American Literature, David McGimpsey teaches in the English Department of Concordia University.

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