by David Meltzer

I wanted to be a stunt
man, crashing through
glass doors, pound out
cowboy hero face
in B movie saloon, fly
out apartment window
smash onto parked car
roof, motorcycle off cliff
into dark angry sea, cop
car ram into high speed
perp van, slam raw hand
into slick alien guts, wrest
sword from samurai grip, rip
grenade tossed by Nazi
scar, 10 car pile up Kong
provokes, near black out
underwater trapped in diving
bell, afire race down end of
planet street, flip into air
above ancient volcano, seat
belt won’t unlock buckle
in quicksand surround, trapeze
snaps me down to no net, roll
through papier mache
avalanche into surprise
iron wall, fall onto
a horse not there, oak
break away chair doesn’t
on my head, airplane wing
strap won’t let my feet go,
rooftop to rooftop leap
missed, crunch spine
chakras into dust, karate
kick in kishkes
ruptures spleen,

retractable nails don’t
in dueling yogis fight
scene, as Plastic Man
double flattened out
hero accordion in
elevator mishap, stalked
by monster orca, lost
three fingers already
bent by bad punches,
forget the scene
w/ the lioness in heat,
& more galore
as they splash on movie ads

I wanted to become a stuntman
I became a poet