Gerard Sarnat

“The more you learn about the dignity of the gorilla, the more you want to avoid people.” – Dian Fossey

Shalom salaam shanti.

Digging deeper and deeper, primate just want sto give birth.

Breathe, pay attention, push as decades ago down the coast

pulling a slick Jeff Airplane babe into the world back of a flatbed

later on coaching out the same, your own firstborn in Pt. Reyes.

My wits become jumbled as the snack food.

Yummy gummy worms among mixed pyschonauts

couch-potato, yam sandwiched, Camembert too close for comfort

among grandmotherly raisins, prudish dates, maidenhead figs.

Dali biomorph gorp roasts snails and marshmallows

in a choir of pale Camp Fire Girls and Bluebird sopranos.

Robin redbreasts lay M&M eggs that singe my cortex

sing in my skull, don’t melt in my mouth.

A rope-a-doped empty soda can can’t bring order from chaos.

Instead I slake thirst

with reverse-engineered flavor-enhanced honeydew smartwater.

After sixty-odd years knocking at the door

more than half as husband and father

now not quite porpoise

the answer is constant birth.

I am a sunflower spurt open, bundled as laundry

handed over to Labor and Delivery.

My cranium is a nightingale heavy with young

a watermelon hatched in a wheelbarrow

bathed in an amnion of hummingbird dippers.

My cerebrum is a sponge crammed

in a pineapple crate inside a uterus on a Harley.

Wordsworth says, The child is father of the man.

Too much is happening: Puer Eternis aches to nest.

Push, push, deeper and deeper.

You must give birth.

An insurgent scouting the unknown, gleeful gravitas demented

this pleiotropic quest, sprouted wings, merged sacrament with play

renunciation with excess, never sure what’s next, what to expect

how the mélange’ll unfold — then stirred.

A wasted day of emotional slither?

What if I open the floodgates and there’s no flood?

We’ll see.

I don translucent eyeshades

go deeper much deeper inside

allow out out, let in in.

From pygmy forest nowheres, journey comrades arise.

Electric geckos slipslide buttery dendrites.

Thumbsized shortstops seduce butterfly axons.

Tarantulas summersault winterpepper synapses

catch in-field rye under cobweb trapdoors where king cobras

clench screams of near enemy yolk hunting for its teeth.

Holden, now that J.D.’s dead, will I grow up phony?

How do we know when we’re done making love?

About the Author

Gerard Sarnat has been nominated for the pending 2022 Science Fiction Poetry Association Dwarf Star Award, won San Francisco Poetry’s 2020 Contest, the Poetry in the Arts First Place Award plus the Dorfman Prize, and has been nominated for handfuls of 2021 and previous Pushcarts plus Best of the Net Awards. Gerry is widely published including in 2022 Awakenings Review, 2022 Arts & Cultural Council of Bucks County Celebration, 2022 Rio Grande Valley International Poetry Festival Anthology, HitchLit Review, Lowestoft, Washington Square/NYU Review, The Deronda Review, Jewish Writing Project, Hong Kong Review, Tokyo Poetry Journal, Buddhist Poetry Review, Gargoyle, Main Street Rag, New Delta Review, Arkansas Review, Hamilton-Stone Review, Northampton Review, New Haven Poetry Institute, Texas Review, Vonnegut Journal, Brooklyn Review, San Francisco Magazine, Monterey Poetry Review, The Los Angeles Review, and The New York Times as well as by Slippery Rock, Northwestern, Pomona, Harvard, Stanford, Dartmouth, Penn, Columbia, North Dakota, McMaster, Maine, University of British Columbia and University of Chicago presses. He is a Harvard College and Medical School-trained physician who’s built and staffed clinics for the marginalized as well as a Stanford professor and healthcare CEO. Currently he is devoting energy/ resources to deal with climate justice, and serves on Climate Action Now’s board. Gerry’s been married since 1969 with progeny consisting of four collections (Homeless Chronicles: From Abraham To Burning Man, Disputes, 17s, Melting the Ice King) plus three kids/ six grandsons — and is looking forward to potential future granddaughters.