By Janet McCann
Come sit at my table. Look,
Hopper even painted a chair for you.
(His spaces so large, so empty,
only a book or vase there
and sometimes nothing but surfaces.)
My hat is too warm
but I can’t remove it.
The coffee is weak and my
friend did not show up; please
sit down, spread your junk out
on the table, disturb the artist.
It is 1927 so you can smoke.
Pull out a ratty life-saver roll and
a rumpled handkerchief.
Live in, liven this picture.
Strike a match. Light up.
Journals publishing Janet McCann’s work include KANSAS QUARTERLY, PARNASSUS, NIMROD, SOU’WESTER, AMERICA, CHRISTIAN CENTURY, CHRISTIANITY AND LITERATURE, NEW YORK QUARTERLY, TENDRIL, and others. A 1989 NEA Creative Writing Fellowship winner, she taught at Texas A & M University from 1969-2016, is now Professor Emerita. She has co-edited anthologies with David Craig, ODD ANGLES OF HEAVEN (Shaw, 1994), PLACE OF PASSAGE (Story Line, 2000), and POEMS OF FRANCIS AND CLARE (St. Anthony Messenger, 2004). Most recent poetry collection: THE CRONE AT THE CASINO (Lamar University Press, 2014).