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David Callin 04-23-2022 06:56 AM

Poetry Scotland
I have a poem in Poetry Scotland - a first for me. (A pleasing one.)

I see I workshopped it here in 2015. It's taken a while to find a home. Here, for what it's worth, it is. Just in case you don't usually see Poetry Scotland.

Wile E. Quixote

His plots,
his brilliant ploys,
his cunning capers
are his alone. Had he
a helpmeet, a sidekick,
an unsentimental peasant
to warn him and to heckle,
to look doubtfully
whilst sucking snaggle teeth,
would that be better?

He has the sorrowful countenance
of an unsuccessful wolf:
woebegone and wistful
and slightly singed,
always slightly singed.

His courtship is a series
of untimely detonations,
of frantic scrabbling
in suddenly thin air.
He won't give up.

Maybe behind some bush
or in the very next canyon
this mad pursuit will end,
and he will catch
the fabulous bird -

an unimaginable

Susan McLean 04-23-2022 07:12 AM

I love it. The title and the parallels are delightful, and the ending feels satisfying.


Matt Q 04-23-2022 07:31 AM

Was it really 2015? I'd thought I'd seen it a lot more recently that. Anyhow, I was really pleased to see you in Poetry Scotland when the latest issue came through my door. An inspired hybrid and a great poem. Congrats!

John Isbell 04-23-2022 07:41 AM

Hi David,

What a lovely poem and title! And I like that you are publishing amid the Scots - very nice. I have a poem on Wile E. Coyote that I must now consider discarding, since though I like it, it is I think no match for what you've got here.


Joe Crocker 04-23-2022 08:03 AM

Neatly and touchingly done, David. I still love the way that the law of gravity comes into play only after its inevitability finally dawns on Coyote's face.

I wonder if windmills ever made an appearance in the cartoon? Surely the ACME corporation made one?

I was looking on the wiki page and found a quote by George Santayana ‘A fanatic is one who redoubles his effort when he has forgotten his aim.’

Mark McDonnell 04-24-2022 04:58 AM

Congratulations, David. As I think you said elsewhere, an inspired title just begging for a poem to do it justice. Which this really does.

David Callin 04-24-2022 02:07 PM

Thanks Susan, Matt, John, Joe and Mark. Really pleased to get into PS.

Forgot about the windmills, Joe!

And, Mark, the coast is still clear for anyone who wants to write "Don Coyote". I can easily imagine someone of that name having a brief affair with Joni Mitchell during a residence at the Troubadour in 1967.

I see that Andy Jackson, one of the editors, is an excellent poet himself. He came up with one of my favourite ever titles - "What Made Milngavie Famous". But you have to know how to say Milngavie to appreciate that one.



John Isbell 04-24-2022 06:46 PM

Here's Jerry Lee:

And here's a great Scot:


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