This is Not a Poem


by Richard Kuslan (November 2019)

Ghost Red Wire, Don Van Vliet




This is not a poem.

There is no form nor rhyme

nor music in its words and phrases.

This is not a Poem

& I’m not joking.


Ceci n’est pas une pipsqueak.


I’m deadly serious.


Words strung together,

common coin like

bowling ball and wet-suit


     prosaic everyday ordure

(thought this was turning poetic?

fell right into my trap!)

a poem do not make.


This is Not a poem.


Such is the case today that many will read and defend

this as ironically a poem. tsk, tsk! pshaw!

Standards are low low looooooow.


Have I insulted your intelligence

or have you insulted mine?


But no, this is not a poem & I’m not joking.


I’m deadly serious.



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Richard Kuslan is an admirer of Donne, Sheridan, Byron, LeFanu, Trollope, Orwell, Sacheverell Sitwell, Christopher Logue and Jean Sprackland, among (many) others in the English language. He marvels at meaning’s fecundity when language is constrained by form and delights in the melodies that take to the air when the beautiful is read aloud.

Follow NER on Twitter @NERIconoclas

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