Poems by Philip Timpane

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My Daughter Calls Me On Global Warming

by Philip Timpane

From Canary Fall 2010

Phil lives on the graveled banks of Alford Brook just east of its confluence with the Green River, a mile or two north of where it joins the Housatonic River, in the Berkshire Hills of Western Massachusetts, formed when Africa collided with North America.

Because she doesn't first have to hammer the horses' turds
to dislodge them from the frozen ground
she says she thinks it's getting warmer
though I've warned her of the forecast hardened
on a dozen frigid nights but shifting
her grip to the fork and the phone to her shoulder
she insists that she is right

And who am I to argue at the other end of the line
from a weathered way of life mucking the paddock
under the light pressure of receding stars
reflecting on the crescent moon's waxing story
the polar opposite really of receding ice
oceans rising as we speak
on our lithium powered cordless phones

The effects of a single degree loosening its grip
softening voices that predict
how soon the herd will shed their shaggy coats
how long we have
to settle for cold comfort
calling each other in the darkness
warmed by the steam of mammals huddled together
and the working of our own pawing hearts




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