A Scavenger of Words by J. J. Steinfeld

Idiomatic idiotic remarks
as the clock tick-tocks away
into the memory of time.
What does that drivel mean?
Perhaps I should have said,
or even sang out,
Idiotic idiomatic remarks,
the order, you know,
is meaningful
and full of meaning.
You should be fed to carrion eaters
that have no time for words
only for feeding on fools.
Birds of prey or praying birds
would that be?
You and your language,
nothing but a scavenger of words.
Are you the idiom or the idiot?
I am silence and time
and I have captured you.
Not as long as I collect words
and arrange them one by one
on that timeless saving something
resembling a lover’s heart
and a path away from captivity.

•••

BIO: J. J. Steinfeld is a Canadian fiction writer, poet, and playwright who lives on Prince Edward Island, where he is patiently waiting for Godot’s arrival and a phone call from Kafka. While waiting, he has published sixteen books, including Disturbing Identities (Stories, Ekstasis Editions), Should the Word Hell Be Capitalized? (Stories, Gaspereau Press), Would You Hide Me? (Stories, Gaspereau Press), An Affection for Precipices (Poetry, Serengeti Press), Misshapenness (Poetry, Ekstasis Editions), Word Burials (Novel and Stories, Crossing Chaos Enigmatic Ink), Identity Dreams and Memory Sounds (Poetry, Ekstasis Editions), and Madhouses in Heaven, Castles in Hell (Stories, Ekstasis Editions). His short stories and poems have appeared in numerous anthologies and periodicals internationally, and over forty of his one-act plays and a handful of full-length plays have been performed in Canada and the United States.

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