happiest of birthdays to jen, who reaches the ripe old age of, say, twenty one today. which means that i am twenty. which is awesome. i will give you your birthday hug, my dear, when we frolic at ye olde five year college reunion this fall.

penning a page for the reunion class book was less taxing than it could have been; i suppose it will be more stressful when we've been out for ten years, or twenty five years, and everyone is talking about winning pulitzers and their trilingual children. this time i managed to include the words procreate, grave digger, and cockroach while summarizing my life, and i feel very arty.

bless the giant newsstand for its copies of zyzzyva; it's quite agreeable to read west coast poetry in manhattan in the spring. howard, if you're out there, great issue.
A reader writes to complain
that there are no cellphones in my poems,
so here is one,

its body chrome,
its face a metallic blue.
It's neither transmitting nor receiving.

A woman from Duluth requests
that I cease sending secret messages
to her in my poems.

This I will do forthwith.

And the blackbird at evening.

She says, You have misrepresented the river
there where it turns

by the holm oak and the bed
of winter hyacinths.

This I will correct.

(michael palmer, from "night gardening," zyzzyva xxi, 1)

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