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I think of you in a lounge chair
writing in your spider-fingered notebook
whiskey glass close by
your cigarette burning down to ash.
I think of you in the bathroom mirror
bare chest, veined biceps
you’re fitting a new blade in your razor
carefully scraping under your moustache.
I think of you in a Zionist meeting,
in a yellowing letter to a newspaper
you were the shortest man in the room
warning of Herr Hitler in your British accent.
I think of you in your blue and white Oldsmobile
throaty horse power, foot flat on the floor
uphill on Loch Avenue passing all the traffic
your head barely higher than the steering wheel.
I think of you in your engineer’s clothing
those same old grey pants, that same old herring-boned jacket
walking around the lathes and milling machines
as they pulse white milky coolant on the metal.
I think of you in your garden, burning rubbish
your shirt stained with sweat, your brow sunburned
I think of you at the dinner table
helping yourself to another slice of pink roast beef.
I think of you yelling “why isn’t the fucking room ready”
in a small hotel after a day’s drive
I think of you trying to rule the world
until in the end the world ran you over in disdain.
I’m older than you were when you died
it was all so long ago
Why do I still think of you?
Little man with such big ideas.
© Johnmichael Simon
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