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Monday, April 12, 2010


by Steve Hellyard Swartz

Not the stars of this rodeo, but
Two Grannies
White of hair and hair tightly-permed, the
Two Grannies
Stand on low bleachers behind the speakers
The speakers, well, you know them
Maybe you’ve tried their lip gloss or spent an hour with them staring at the sun
But it was the
Two Grannies
That caught my eye
We’ve been told we know them
We’ve grown up – all of us
Moslem, Christian, Jew
Black, White, me and you
Being told how well we know them
When I was a kid they wore dresses and pearls, and they were always mixing something
Mixing, mixing, mixing
When they weren’t they were seated demurely on the couch, fixing
But today, the
Two Grannies
Stand behind the two young stars of this particular lynch mob
Their Granny lips garroting every vowel, the good and the bad
Their Granny eyes shining brightly
Their 2 for 1 hearts beating in perfect harmony
Two Grannies who have never been in need of anything more than a ride
Two Grannies who have never been in need of anything that the God of April couldn’t easily provide

Steve Hellyard Swartz is Poet Laureate of Schenectady County in upstate New York. Between storms, he writes poetry that has been published in New Verse News, Haggard and Halloo and The Kennesaw Review. His poetry has earned Honorable Mention in The Allen Ginsberg Poetry Awards (2007 and 2008), as well as The Mary C. Mohr and Anna Davidson Rosenberg Poetry Awards. In 2009, his poetry appeared in The Paterson Review and The Southern Indiana Review. In 1990, Never Leave Nevada, which he wrote and directed and in which he co-starred, opened in Dramatic Competition at the US Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.