by Tim Suermondt


The morning comes like movie stars,
movie stars in sailboats.

I’m no star in any configuration,
but I acknowledge Beauty’s pecking order
and I gladly give her a pass on my behalf.

On the beach I talk to an old man
who’s searching for coins to give to his
long lost son–”He will need money, Qui?”

A Question: Will any of us ever be found?
But…no, that’s a story for another day
or poem—like the dogs dashing over and rolling
in the sand, I’m happy

and when my wife arrives any complaints
I might have will garner zero defense.

Beside a water level pole red as lipstick
the old man waves and I wave back–
with all my might.


In a small Normandy town
my wife and I enjoy
a fine, economical dinner.

The bright lit full moon has anchored itself
slightly slanted near a rather big cathedral,
as if looking down,
concerned for us all.

On the way back to our hotel
my wife and I stop and kiss
across from a house locals say
held its share of the wounded and dying.

I sense the soldiers who came by sea
don’t doubt we came there for them,
to show that the world is beautiful
despite history’s attempts at making
this sound foolish, obsolete.

Beautiful as my father sitting on a hard chair,
analyzing his maps, lost and saved
everyday in the suburbs of Valhalla.


The jazz player who said “Open the windows
or we’ll all get sophisticated” leads to the remark
about the ballplayer who was so fast “that when
he turned off the light switch when he went to bed,
he was under the covers before the room got dark.”
And Oscar Wilde coming right out and saying “Give
me the luxuries of life and I can do without the necessities”
and Kenneth Patchen defining hopelessness better than
any other when he wrote “I feel like a carpet in a cathouse.”
I could go on and I will, but it’s time to duck into this
small café/diner, a clean, fairly well-lighted place where
it’s quite felicitous to utter “All men eat, but Fu Manchu.”


Things supposedly difficult often
turn out to be simple, easy to the core.
I thought of this, standing by myself
in front of the pizzeria, eyeing the oak
tree nestled behind the garbage bins.
Sausage, pepperoni, toppings galore
and since the world and I are friendly
again to one another we walked in with
grandeur, ordering the biggest pie to share.

About the Author:

Tim Suermondt is the author of four full-length collections of poems: Trying To Help The Elephant Man Dance (The Backwaters Press, 2007), Just Beautiful (New York Quarterly Books, 2010), Election Night And The Five Satins (Glass Lyre Press, 2016) and The World Doesn’t Know You published by Pinyon Publishing in late 2017. His fifth book Josephine Baker Swimming Pool will be released in 2018 by MadHat Press. He has poems published in Poetry, The Georgia Review, Ploughshares, Prairie Schooner, Blackbird, Bellevue Literary Review, North Dakota Quarterly, December magazine, Plume Poetry Journal, Poetry East and Stand Magazine (England), among others. He is a book reviewer for Cervena Barva Press and a poetry reviewer for Bellevue Literary Review. He lives in Cambridge (MA) with his wife, the poet Pui Ying Wong.