Austerity Measures

Joshua Trotter lives in Montreal. His first book of poems, All This Could Be Yours, was...


Leaning in to take my glass, my hostess
isn’t laughing, but I can see a lively eye
for detail in the hotel uniform she wears
so taut, she’s trading ions with the air.
She’s off again, concocting one last alibi
while I lay back, braying. What an ass.

It’s funny. Dog-tired and under duress
the tide returns from a rough day at sea
to find me sleepless in my beach-chair
hogtied to assorted sordid affairs,
the godawful funfairs I flew here to flee.
Not funny ha-ha. Funny nonetheless.

Call me what you must. I won’t protest
or cast aspersions on your alcoholiday.
I deal in lion’s shares, lighter than the hair
of the dog that curled up in the manger
blocking oxen from eating all the hay.
Annoying, yes, but in their best interest.


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