Sunday, April 15, 2012


I've got one day
a week
to get out
of my lair
and into the jungle
to line up the prey
I'll devour
over the next six days.
is spent
working for the hole
I shit in.
I'm an animal
of the worst sort--
old, trapped,
but still needing
to go on.

It's gotten warm
on this savannah,
and so I sit
among all the fleeter creatures,
legs, knees and shoulders arthritic,
teeth are long and mostly gone,
heart, though quite diseased, resting
for the next quick pump, the next challenge.
I look at them all,
the female and male:
young ones, old ones, fat ones, thin ones,
ass' pert or like Montana mules,
I measure them,
gauge the distance;
only one out of a thousand
looks like it would make a good meal,
but the old beast must shop
at any store that's closest, must make do
with meat that's available,
no matter the cut and damn
the cost.

Most who pass
give me not a second thought;
they do not see the madness
in my eyes, or the hunger,
certainly not the desperation.
I've not gotten this old
by showing my cards,
only playing my hand.

A little girl decides to stop
and plop down
on the sidewalk near me;
her mother tries to yank her up
by an arm; her father looks on
seemingly helpless.
The little girl's face
is dirty, smudged with her last
snack. Her defiant blue eyes
find mine. We look at each other
locked in a fine standoff.
The girl's forefinger is stuck
so far up her nose
that barely her knuckle shows.
The mother looks at me,
and yanks harder.
She tells the father
to grab the other arm
which he does.
The little girl drags her feet
and looks over her shoulder
at me. Unfortunately,
I don't have another decade
to wait for her.
Excuse me,
a gentle voice said,
may I sit in this seat?
I swivel my head
right into the eyes
of an eighty-five year old.
By all means,
please, I reply.
I watch as she places
her three-pronged cane
into a space that allows her
to settle safely.
My mouth

Norman Savage
Greenwich Village, 2012

Saturday, April 14, 2012


the dick
does not come
with a lifetime guarantee;
I know this
is hard,
if not impossible,
to believe
for the young
and the middle aged
when a random thought
or brushing against
the past
or the future
or the immediate
stiffened the rope
that elephants
could hang from.
It's sad
like crossing a threshold
you didn't even know existed
but you've passed;
you look behind
at the gulf
and it seems as tiny as an ant's asshole,
but it might as well be on Mars;
almost as noiseless
as the near dead,
the spigot rasps
and coughs
and dribbles
as you watch
it empty: youth,
your youth
has taken off
for greener pastures.
No longer
will you be able to
guide it in, or,
like an old sock,
soft from wear and washing,
stuff it up there knowing
it will find a resting place,
anyplace, like the corner of a drawer.
It will be
a mocking appendage
that informs you
of the time it was,
the time it is,
and why old men
are so quick
to wage war.

Norman Savage
Greenwich Village, 2012

Friday, April 6, 2012


I was looked on
as dangerous.
Don't get too close,
they said,
he'll get you in trouble,
bring you down,
have his way
with you. And don't,
whatever you do,
they stressed,
fall in love with him;
he'll steal your money
or your heart
or both
even if he likes you.

Now, I'm just
a cautionary tale.

But that's O.K.
It was all
besides the point
the ones who were pulled
with fever or guts
into my orbit
had their own gambler's dreams,
drew closer to me
and tumbled
as they sucked
whatever they wanted to suck
until they became dry
or exhausted or I became
too predictable
and boring;
the others
without those feelers
were never in danger
to begin with.

History is always something
yet to be lived
by each of us.

Norman Savage
Greenwich Village, 2012