First Class & Mnemonic Upgrades

by Carl Nelson (November 2019)

Portrait of Hans Frisch, E. L. Kirchner
First Class
I would make an excellent rich person.
My wife and I upgraded with miles
and handled the transition quite well.
It immediately made me a better person,
belted in and given free drinks.
And as that plane rose,
I wanted all boats to rise
on my bonhomie.
Hey! Why in the world
can’t we all just get along?
I even suggested.
The stewardess was friendly
and referred to me by name,
again and again.
My pleasure was important to her.
How many people actually care
if you’re having a good time?
This is what I was getting at . . .
It can make the world below
of flat green and brown squares,
wild hills, shining lakes and rocky geology,
vast spaces and spare comforts
feel rather . . . closer?
Maybe there’s your bartender,
perhaps your minister, the wife.
Your doctor, lawyer, banker
—it all depends.
This is some of what
I was getting at.

The Red Tractor, Maurice de Vlaminck, 1956
Mnemonic Upgrades / Things are Named for What They Replaced
Reincarnation is not so much off the mark
as transcending it,
as we become more and more virtual—
just a thought basically and
possibly an afterthought, finally.
That in a tradition of spiritual seniority ad nauseam . . .
we outsource the redundancy.
As how is attention to be paid?
I’m named after my grandfather,
As my father was still alive,
when we lived in the Bubbling Brook Estates.
—now the current Dribbling Culvert—
as presently, the urn replaces him.
Grandpa bought a tractor
and named it for his horse.
Politics replaced faith, and
every historical novel replaces the past.
History is a dusty attic stuffed with junk.
But you lend the granddaughter her middle name,
and it works better than embalming.

Head of a Dog, Edvard Munch, 1930
Tater Tot Poem #29
She’s the dog next door.
Before she got fixed,
they used to gambol
all over the yard.
Now she’s become matronly,
and just wants to stare at him
and describe his shortcomings.

Carl Nelson has recently finished his book, The Poet's (40 Pound) Weight Loss Plan, comprised of instructional prose and poetry. Using his method he is walking forty pounds lighter with normal fasting glucose levels and not snoring at night, while currently working on a second volume of Self-Help poetry, The Poet's (29 Year) Marriage Plan. He lives in Belpre, Ohio where he considers existence while walking his ginger dachshund, Tater Tot. Read about the author and his newest book here

Follow NER on Twitter @NERIconoclast


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