Two Poems by CL Bledsoe

I Wish You Were Fun

I don’t know what the birds are singing
about, but I suspect it’s something to do
with their sciatica. Mirrors begrudge us
for not being Picassos. All sadness and past
due bills while needing a haircut. I wish
I was fun. I wish fear didn’t strangle my smile
while I am just trying to get the shopping
done. There’s so much weight on my
shoulders I can’t look up without something
important sliding off. Laugh. At least
I’m not Ayn Rand. It’s a different kind
of fear. That I can’t open enough
to the world or that I can’t close fast
enough. Either way, no one is happy
with every new recipe. When I close
my eyes and think of you I see commercials.
So many times it’s about flirting with the void
when all you want is to be held by the darkness.
I’m sorry that you aren’t happy, but I’m not
going to be your midlife crisis. The difference
between an adventure and a mistake is all
in the telling. These days, I’m all mistake.
Coward cowering indoors for fear of storm.
I’m already wet and I have so far to go in
these squeaky shoes. But you remember
when I was fun. Were there ever days
before these?


Mornings, Feeding the Fish

There was a different smell in the morning.
The cows were quiet. The breeze

came in from the Lake down the hill.
The sun hadn’t heated the dead

fish, yet. You could believe the world
was new, just because it hadn’t

seen light in a while.


Raised on a rice and catfish farm in eastern Arkansas, CL Bledsoe is the author of more than twenty books, including the poetry collections Riceland, Trashcans in Love, Grief Bacon, and his newest, Driving Around, Looking in Other People’s Windows, as well as his latest novels Goodbye, Mr. Lonely and the forthcoming The Saviors. Bledsoe co-writes the humor blog How to Even, with Michael Gushue located here: His own blog, Not Another TV Dad, is located here: He’s been published in hundreds of journals, newspapers, and websites that you’ve probably never heard of. Bledsoe lives in northern Virginia with his daughter.

Leave a Reply