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Kenneth Pobo


Du Fu Fleeing


We’d have lost many of his poems

had he not escaped armed men

to live as a refugee.  


Like kids up from Honduras, 

Guatemala and El Salvador, 

running, on the look-out, 

risking rape and starvation, 

many not making it, 

their poems, stories and songs lost.  


Rewarded, then exiled, 

by the Emperor, Du Fu’s poems 

came in motion, pulled

from a tiny sparkle on a deep pool

of words


where he could hide

when he heard footsteps.



Medusa and Men


From the tops of stairs

in a mall, nabbing me in

a rearview mirror, or 


at the gym when I’m riding 

a stationary bike--they think 

I don’t catch them staring.  

I am a scene seen.  


When they turn to stone,

what else to do but laugh?

How boring they are,

like colorless pebbles.




Housewarming Party


Our new neighbors invite us 

to a party.  Colored lights 

and a piñata for the kids—War,

the guest of honor.


Many people light his cigar,

make his drink.

He reclines on a chaise lounge.  

We sneak out the back door, 

but War catches us--


the party never ends.  Still

the cigar getting lit, still

the drink served


despite bombs going off

far away, loud

against a dead baby.

Du Fu
medusa and men
housewarming party
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