Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Quinton Duval crossed over to another shore last week. He was a hell of a guy and a hell of a poet. Here's one of my favorite Quinton Duval poems, from Joe's Rain (Cedar House Books 2005).


It's a walleye, the guy on TV says.
Last time it was a catfish
that filled the boat with violet light.
They let that go.
But they keep the walleye for lunch.
I can foresee the filet knife nick
open the silver muscle
at the tail, and the clean slide
down to the gills.
Then the campfire on the bank,
smoke, grease muttering in the pan,
the applause the fish makes
in the black bottom of the skillet.
We have ourselves huddled over
open coals turning fish or meat,
talking, smoking, drinking
out of green bottles something
bottomless and pale. When you leave,
when you must fall into your night sleep
on a distant shoreline filled with camp smoke,
raise your arm, please. Let the others
know it's the same whatever shore
we land on in the end.