Doug Holder, US




Free Verse


I Know Bernie, I Can Get You In

* For Bernie Madoff


There was a long line for the men's room.

You know,
when men reach a certain age,
there is an urgency
to their frequent trips.

So I saw an opportunity,
I told them:
"I know Bernie, I can get you in."

"Really!" they cried.
But I played it coy,
"But it ain't easy",
I said.
"Bernie doesn't let everyone take
a quick trip to the head."

Their lips quivered, their hands started to shake:
"But, but... you can get us in right?"

They forced money in my hands
and they stampeded to the portals
of those so valued urinals
and knocked ferociously
on the locked door
"I know Bernie, let me in!"

They wound up doing it on the floor.



"Words are stains on the silence."

( Samuel Beckett)


The disembodied tongue
flits and flutters
just above the looming

The string of household banalities

all the expired and dented cans
the litter for the cat's unending piss.

The nervous lamenting,
the grocery lists
of that
and for christ's sake
will never
be missed
in the



About Doug Holder


Doug Holder's work will appear in The Long Island Quarterly, the new renaissance, The Boston Globe Magazine, Home Planet News, Poesy and others. He is the founder of the Ibbetson Street Press, and his latest poetry collection is The Man in the Booth in the Midtown Tunnel ( Cervena Barva Press); he has a new collection of interviews: "From the Paris of New England: Interviews with Poets and Writers" ( Ibbetson Street)Doug Holder.

This is Doug Holder's first appearance in Sketchbook.









to the top



Copyright 2006-2009 Sketchbook and  All rights reserved