Two Poems,
by Philip Hyams


Mongrel, they shot you with
Pellets that pulped your heart
And tufts of your fur flew up
Into the early morning light.

Our kibbutz had too many hounds
That year and not enough cats to
Catch the mice.


Python from Jerusalem,
In the sweet blackness squeeze
My meager suffering out
While I perish ligatured in your
Muscular rippling wire body.

Like an electric current you surge
Through me through me through me.
I frizzle at the ends.
I am one then.
You are me.

Jerusalem’s brown experienced body
Twists and contorts in the night.
Before tomorrow’s shining
The old city’s walls shall crash in
On my head.

The donkey’s wails shatter
Evening’s pensive mood.

And you slinky supple serpent?
You are gone before I awake,
Your teardrops frozen upon my pillow,
Shimmering jewels in the cracks
Of early morning’s smile.


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