The poems of my friend Julie Kane are a delight: witty, lovingly crafted, brimming with heart and self-deprecating humor. Today I thought I would share one of my favorites, a poem I adore for its transparency and for how it subtly prepares the reader for its killer last line:
What luck—an open bookstore up ahead
as rain lashed awnings over Royal Street,
and then to find the books were secondhand,
with one whole wall assigned to poetry;
and then, as if that wasn't luck enough,
to find, between Jarrell and Weldon Kees,
the blue-on-cream, familiar backbone of
my chapbook, out of print since '83—
its cover very slightly coffee-stained,
but aging (all in all) no worse than flesh
through all those cycles of the seasons since
its publication by a London press.
Then, out of luck, I read the name inside:
The man I thought would love me till I died.
Julie's brand new book, Paper Bullets, is just out from White Violet Press. The jacket copy calls her "our 21st Century Dorothy Parker"--high praise with which I happen to wholeheartedly concur.