there are two worlds

by Jack Liskin


in one of them
a bear shits in the woods
the woman picking flowers sees the bear
and the bear ambles away turning over rocks to find ants
and the creek runs over the rocks and the aspens grow by the creek
the clouds form and darken and spill rain on the rocks and creek and aspens

in the other world dutch citizens board a malaysian plane and are shot down
by russian separatists battling ukrainians for control of the country
and vice media reports on it for youtube while fox media
reports outrage by international leaders and president
obama makes a statement and there are dead
bodies on a field of sunflowers


Jack Liskin is a California poet, the immigrant son of a Holocaust survivor, who in previous manifestations directed USC’s Physician Assistant Program as a faculty member of the School of Medicine; established a Trager practice in the Department of Family Medicine’s clinic (a form of hands-on bodywork which he described in Moving Medicine, his biography of its founder, Milton Trager, MD); completed apprenticeships with the Huichol Indians of Mexico at two of their sacred sites; and farmed and sold his produce at Southern California farmer’s markets. His poetry examines the heads and tails of experience and imagination, distilled through love of language and motivated by a desire to leave behind something beautiful and useful. He received a BA in Latin American Studies and an MA in Cultural Anthropology, both at UCLA, and Paramedic and Physician Assistant training at L.A. County Hospital and USC. His recent poems have appeared in The Interpreters House, Slant, Earth’s Daughters, 3rd Wednesday, Stoneboat, Plainsongs, and Iconoclast.

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