Doug Holder, US




Free Verse


Jacob Wirth ( Boston, Mass. 1868 to? )

* an old tavern in Boston, Mass.


The sawdust
on the floor
has gone the way
of all dust.
But it is the hard slap
of the house dark
on the dark, mahogany bar
that sustains me.
Yes ,
they have made
to a high
definition TV
but the ancient
beaten ivories
of the piano
still hold their torch songs
on Friday nights.
it seems
there is still a wholesome, yellow statement
of cornbread,
and a saucer of
baked beans.
The long dining room
has stretched over 100 years
and in the rear
there is a pay phone
in its battered booth
before you hit the head.
And that din of laughter

(and I admit
I miss the cigar smoke)
and the bright red

sheaves of corned beef
sprouting from dark bread.
What was once alive in this city
is still
not quite



Meat is a tasty murder


Broiled, fried, crucified.
On a plate
on a platter
what does it matter?

We classify
all our
mannered cuts:
sirloin, tenderloin
and for the regular Joes
you can call it "Chuck."

With a flash
of silvery cutlery
I cut,
but really
I want to
tear into
succulent meat,

and delicately wipe the blood
that stained my cheek.

My word
for savages
we are so







About Doug Holder


Doug Holder is the founder of the Ibbetson Street Press of Somerville. His recent poetry has appeared in Nibble, Orgami Condom, Conceit, Cause and Affect, and Presa Magazine ( featured poet). Holder's lastest collection is The Man in the Booth in the Midtown Tunnel ( Cervena Barva Press). He was nominated for two Pushcart Awards in 2007.






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