Exegesis

parson, there’s trouble in Maryland, parson, my faucet
leaks, parson, there’s no dog for my leash, parson, the
lepers pray in the moonlight, parson, did your mother
wear lavendar garters, parson, why do I feel good when
I know it can’t be so, parson, why can’t I use a ques-
tion mark now, parson, why do you have a tubby gut fill-
ed with goldfish, parson, what ever happened to thatĀ 
linebacker, parson, there’s grey trouble floating inĀ 
the Florida marshes, parson, I want you to sit up and
close your eyes like a canary under a white sack at
night, parson, I want you to chew on your fingers like
abazaba bars, parson, Charo ought to be eating the ba-
nana from my refrigerator, parson, Felix the Cat and
Tom Mix were lovers, parson, the British troops were
very grand walking right into it like a last symphony
under white wigs, parson, grief is a banjo with one
string left, parson, the clouds rift apart and show the
face of an international money order, parson, tell St.
Anne I said hello, parson, Socrates took it through the
teeth and Plato expired, parson, remind me to have you
pick up your copy of the free throwaway shopping guide,
parson, there’s trouble in Savannah, parson, you know
that the trouble is not in the eye of the minnow but
that it is their tiny smile, parson, the secret is in
the deformity and not the perfectness, parson, you
should have been a belly dancer in an East Kansas City
whale Trap, parson, you got me coming all over this
white paper.

Author
Charles Bukowski
Written
1977
This poem appeared in the following books: