Observations on Capitalism Written on a Postcard Bearing a Reproduction of Painting, 1950 by Joan Miró
Forcing need where none existed before, it repeats the trick again
and again, investing and reinvesting in itself, building, redefining and
widening markets, and, in a power lock appalling to some and making
others giddy with glee, unregulated it becomes the first two letters,
the ‘go’ in government.
Fragments of Spring
We talked about the movie
Vertigo, our conversation vague.
I never understood it, really. She
wasn’t who she was, in the end.
She was found out to be someone
Strawberry leaves like floppy
bunny ears. The tulips slowly
beginning to flower. The group
eaten by deer received the most
attention before but now are no
Fragments broken from a
sculpture, rose petals crunching
Our days demanding, post-
traumatic, limbo. Glancing to
the past, and to the future.
Sestina for Lowry
Bring a copy of Malcolm Lowry’s Under
the Volcano in honor of a world we cared about
before our own was spent.
We’ll no more fear the empty glass
nor worry over failing health.
Once we have died, these matter not.
I hope you will not
hate me, or feel misunder-
stood. I wish you health
and happiness. Don’t fret about
the past. Fill every glass
to overflow, don’t finish life half spent.
Think now and then of times we’ve spent
and keep the porch light burning. Try not
to work too hard in life, because like glass
we break. First all our dreams will vanish under-
neath the garden wall, then comes the ghost to hang about
once death has paid a call. Transcendency of mental health
might seem to some our hope, yet a health-
y dose of living keeps us tethered to the rope. Spent
trials and emotion, about
which we’ve no say, not
knowing what we want, our efforts under-
mined and stray. Life dwells beside a house of glass,
so predisposed to glas-
nost, so have a toast to love and health.
Don’t fetch the under-
taker ‘til the money’s almost spent.
Your tendency towards not
romanticizing has got you in a bout
with an existential gadabout
who claims death’s the nearest looking glass.
Impossible to see, impossible to not.
In the name of God be health.
The future is eternity spent
without a glass to hold to. Delay the going under.
Once under we’re about
the past, spent, rivers passed through, glass-
y eyed. Strangers in their health regard us not.
Morgan Harlow’s work has appeared in Blackbox Manifold, Ottawa Arts Review, Washington Square, The Moth, Seneca Review, and elsewhere and is forthcoming in Miramichi Flash and The Oakland Review. She lives in rural Wisconsin and is the author of a full-length poetry collection, Midwest Ritual Burning.