poems by John Grey

Ode to Cider


This cider

was once an apple –

go figure.



red and green –

and now this.


Plucked or fell,

selected or abandoned –


fruit found its way

to my lips, my tongue.


It’s going to my head –

that’s the highest it’s been

since the treetop.






You were together once.

She laughed so close to your ear

you could have sworn

you were the one who got the joke.

And then when she got sick,

how you ailed.

All that bliss

and now what?

Your heart’s gone into hiding

somewhere behind your ribs.

You don’t call anything your own.


That’s how it is

when one goes and one stays on.

Your punchlines, your aches,

don’t amount to anything.

Even ghosts seem pointless.

You don’t shudder.

You don’t regret.

You merely ask, “Where have you been?”

and get no answer.


Others say it’s time to get on with your life.

You don’t know what that means.

“Get on” suggests forward motion.

But your life is back there somewhere.



poems by John Grey

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