Back to Michael Foster's Artist PageTo the Artist's Page                   Back to the Unlikely Stories home pageTo our home page
Making DoTo Michael Foster's previous piece     Where Late the Sweet Bird SangTo Michael Foster's next piece


This poem lets you know
up front
      and on the level
   (more or less)
that it's about tricks--
the kind perception plays on you,
often with your collusion--when
you see what you expect
            to see
which is to say what you want to see
      or hope to see
instead of what is actually there
   right before your big baby-blues.

Let's talk about the time you innocently
      picked that man in the line-up
the one who was at his mother's
death bed on the other coast
      at the precise moment
you swore you saw him gun down
the liquor store clerk.  You say you didn't do this
      I have you confused with someone else?
Well, think about it.  Then tell me
      you have done nothing reprehensible.
Consider things that do not seem at first
      to be matters of life or death:
   how you judge beauty corruptly
your view shaped by money,
power, or the aura of money and power;
      or the lateness of the hour (how close
to closing time), the acuteness of your loneliness
      or lust
            or greed,

how even when you understand this
      you conspire to live happily ever after.

To the top of this pageTo the top of this page