Stanley Moss


An Argument

When you said that you wanted to be useful
as the days of the week, I said, “God bless you.”
Then you said you would not trade our Mondays,
useful for two thousand years,
for the Seven Wonders of the ancient world.
I said, “Endless are the wonders
to which I can only say ‘ah, ’ that our ‘Ah’
who art in heaven can easily become the
‘ah, ah’ that comforts a baby. ” Then you said,
“Go make a living on metaphors for ‘ah,’”
that I, a lunatic, secretly want to be
the Lighthouse of Alexandria,



Snow clouds shadow the bay, on the ice the odd fallen gull.
I try to keep my friend from dying by remembering
his childhood of praise to God, who needs us all. Würzburg:
the grownups are inside saying prayers for the dead,
the children are sent out to play — their laughter
more sacred than prayer. After dark his father
blesses and kisses him Güttenacht. He wakes
to go to school with children who stayed behind
and were murdered before promotion.