blackbird online journal spring 2002 vol.1 no. 1



In the Canyons, Hidden Farms

If you've never seen The Seven Samurai,
I'll tell you about Kikuchiyo, the seventh: drunk
When the other samurai find him, they whack him
Upside the head with a stick, he rears up like a bear,
Roars, swings, stumbles but they keep on messing
With the slob, so obviously a joke: he shows them
His papers, they all know he stole them—he can't even read;
He scratches at himself, half-naked: his bare ass
Hangs out of his rags; he hops around like a monkey,
Sticks out his tongue, flips dumb farmers the bird—

But The Seven Samurai is three and a half hours long:
Kikuchiyo can't remain throughout a silly clown—
(The self's a greedy river, our low banks overflow)
His last expression's hidden: dying fast, face down. 

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