“Triptych: Dream, Convenience Store, Bar” by A.M. Juster

A.M. Juster



A vial, a syringe, a long thin flow
of hope is rising. Desperate to know
fatigue and chemofog will dissipate.
The dead have called, but vaguely wait.


KENTS. Gum. The Globe. No milk has sold for days.
He asks the clerk how much the jackpot pays.
Frayed wallet; photo of a woman buried
long ago nearby. They never married.


Two smiles. One wink. The usual appears
although she hasn’t stopped by here for years.
She cracks a joke about her latest breakup.
Reflection. Mother’s grimace through the makeup.

from Rattle #55, Spring 2017
Tribute to Civil Servants

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A.M. Juster: “I’m a little bit more old-school than a lot of today’s poets, but I think that the purpose of poetry is to improve the lives of your audience, to get them to reflect on something that they might not reflect upon, or to think about something in their lives that they might not think about. In a funny poem just try to give them a little joy, which I think is worthwhile in and of itself.” (twitter)

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