Disambiguation With a Dead Carp on the Bank

Unplayable tennis court, its serving boxes blue with mud and cracking paint. 

A hyperborean bent to the wind today. 

I can’t warm up to the wiki they’ve made of my breath.

I’m hyperlinked to carp and sunshine. The rain rolling in 

looks like a smoky valence, while the rain falling down is reticular as mesh.

I’m different from my father, my eponym.

I think you and others would like me to be like him,

but I really can’t approximate his intelligence or patience.

I’m more of an amalgam character, at best.

His worst dog, a big, dumb lab mix, 

had no compunctions about pissing into the weather

or eating trash. I’m more like that. Oh Lord, 

sometimes I think it’s cruel to ask us to sleep beneath the stars 

and taste the gin that comes from heaven as the ice melts.

I’ve never understood the phrase, Long in the tooth,

except as a way to signify what a rat that’s gnawed on nothing

must endure. I’ve been a lost ball in tall weeds, 

distaff of a careless volley, a pint bottle

chucked into the creek. North or northerly, I don’t have to tell you 

what purposelessness can’t do. I practice only vague attribution

when the current season does not foretell the next.

Somebody says the cut leaves are a library of past autumns.

Somebody says yellow is the death of the brick-and-mortar school.

Somebody calls the river a creek, but no one can deny the beauty 

of fallen honey locust leaves in still black water. 

A turkey vulture lofts atop its shadow, 

its bald head a spindle in the sky. 

I refuse to be what putrefies in sallow light;

I bow my head to the fish our friends have come for.  

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