Poetry

Durable Goods

JAMES POLLOCK

Refrigerator

Compartmentalizing is its super-

power. Everything inside has its cool,

dry place, from the egg tray to the crisper,

like an office building, or a school,

albeit at slightly varying temperatures,

from chill to chilly—dryly humorous

in their juxtapositions, their postures,

their unspoken hierarchies, from serious

to silly. Then, every so often,

the door swings open and a light comes on

and reveals the truth: some things are going rotten,

some are running low, and some are gone.

Washing Machine

Weighs your duds with joggles, with brief whirls.

Satisfied, locks the glass door with a click

that says leave. Poured water hisses, steam curls

to fog the window. Such work’s on the clock.

Later you hear all kinds of racket from

the basement: gush of water from a hose,

rhythmic churn, the unbalanced pounding of a drum.

Someone’s beating the shit out of your clothes.

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JAMES POLLOCK

James Pollock is the author of Sailing to Babylon (Able Muse Press) and You Are Here: Essays on the Art of Poetry in Canada (Porcupine’s Quill). He has been a finalist for both the Griffin Poetry Prize and the Governor General’s Literary Award for poetry. He lives in Madison, WI, and at www.jamespollock.org.


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