Two Poems by Joseph Farley

Ah! The Creator!


after god created the universe

he woke with sticky hands and sticky sheets

and blood and skin under his fingernails


what have I (we) wrought!

was the cry of despair

as the universe expanded,

a stain on his underwear.


decisions such as this

should be left to older

more practice hands


capable of making worlds

and overlooking strangers

in strange lands.


We Marry Ourselves


We marry ourselves

reflected in the eyes

of those who are not

the beauty or the beast

though we may later

come to believe

that they are.


It is all in ourselves.

“us” does not exist.

There is no “I” and “I”,

swallowed by

the illusion

of togetherness.


Left to our own devices

we would fall to all fours

and chase mice like a cat,

shower in the wet rain,

live without shelter.


Wise as we are

we have created

the deception

of culture, civilization,

collective beings,

family units.


But at its base

a unit is always one,

a single digit,

alone in a universe

of endless numbers.


Joseph Farley

Joseph Farley edited Axe Factory for 24 years. His books include Suckers, For the Birds, and Longing for the Mother Tongue.


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