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About this poet

Alan Michael Parker is the author of nine books, including The Ladder (Tupelo Press, 2016). He is the Houchens Professor of English at Davidson College and also teaches at the University of Tampa’s low-residency MFA program. He lives in Davidson, North Carolina.

The God of Draperies

When revelation comes, the God of Draperies 
Cannot decide the difference 

Between in and out. 
A patio is out though in a yard, he thinks, 

Nursing his ignorance 
And a mostly gone Tom Collins, 

The sunshine and the cicadas and the loveliness 
Competing for his rage. 

But a car is out? So what about a swizzle stick? 
Out of the box but in the drink, 

Then out of the drink and in the mouth. 
A little bit in and out, he thinks, the vinyl slats 

Of the ancient chaise lounge 
Stuck to him 

Like bacon to a slice of Wonder Bread. 
And the soul is in? And heaven is out? 

But when the soul is 
Out, is it then 

In heaven? 
Time for another 

Drink, a tall one, but only half. 
Which is the way it is, he thinks, 
         
With gods and worshippers and revelation; 
No one is ever sure 

Exactly who 
Has been revealed to whom.

From Love Song with Motor Vehicles, published by BOA Editions, Ltd. Copyright © 2003 by Alan Michael Parker. Reprinted by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

From Love Song with Motor Vehicles, published by BOA Editions, Ltd. Copyright © 2003 by Alan Michael Parker. Reprinted by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Alan Michael Parker

Alan Michael Parker

Alan Michael Parker is the author of several books, including The Ladder (Tupelo Press, 2016).

by this poet

poem
What was he saying and to whom?
With a silver thermos he left the building;
He paused in the courtyard and turned.
What was he saying and to whom?

The building at dawn not yet a building
Paused the way all buildings do.
What was he saying and to whom?

Time doesn't stop; time doesn't wait;
Time has never moved
poem
I love two dogs, even when they’re killing
a baby possum near the columbines,
shaking the varmint
until the death squeal chokes to a gargle,
 
and both dogs stand before the bloody marsupial
nosing it to move,
 
because that’s Nature, right?
(And whom did I just ask whether that was right?)
(And what’s a moral
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