Giant Hotel Fern

by Michael Earl Craig

Michael Earl Craig

It’s said that when it’s time for coffee
and a roll, head straight for the fern
and make a hard left.

When it’s a morning paper you’re after
go toward the fern, bear right, stay
close to the fern, rounding it—
look for Exit 232.

This is a giant fern and people
are streaming early into the glorious lobby,
some of them barefoot,
in white robes searching
for coffee, for rolls, for newsprint.

It’s said that this fern is at the center of Rome.
Maybe twelve feet wide and with a breeze inside.

It’s said that Rome is the greatest city for walking
but when I check it’s in eleventh place.

It’s said that if a white, plain-looking, thick
book called What Is Poetry? falls
with a thump
onto a table before you,
don’t open it.

Last updated December 07, 2022