Susan Marie LaVallee

Nero fiddled
while Rome did the famous thing.
Ragtime played on
as the Titanic was sinking.
His heart made good
its threats of stasis
while I sharked a garage sale.
Buying in twos, my rummy,
in twos
like the Ark mesmerized
by an order
or else
and no one questioned.
I came up short that May.
I should have banked
on my ones and only.
And the ginger jar
is just a sore languish
by the eye
of the fighting fish
called Gadz
because it's all so preposterous.
But he would have thought
it perfectly normal
to be sifting through
another's junk
while he lay dying
Sunday in the new wing.

(previously unpublished)