The Oboist & The Revolution Passed Me By by Maureen Seaton

The Oboist

The only way we can properly forge into a dark future is to bring along our oboes. Bring them high. Bring them low. Vibrato beside violas, glissando between violins. Watch out for horns that spray spit all over the piccolos —and those big-mouthed tubas! I could breeze into your parlor at midnight, blow oboe on your fire in my black tux with the trill keys across the lapels. It’s up to you. I’m president of the flutter-tongue society (watch me roll my lips), plenty of wind left inside me to double your reed, dear, treble your bass clef.

The Revolution Passed Me By

My cable's been out for three days and I call a man who sounds like he's sitting on a pole outside my window watching me answer the phone and he says I didn't pay my bill. Well, yes, I did, I tell him, but he turns out to be right so I get out my card and the numbers fly out into TV land or man on top of the pole land. He has me now forever and he promises my cable will work by ten. And if it doesn't, he adds kindly, having taken all my numbers, I can disconnect the box from the wall and still watch my favorite show. But nothing works, the cable, the disconnect. So I slip in an ancient Northern Exposure, the one where Chris illuminates “Casey at the Bat” for two warring academics. When it's over, I fall asleep to the blue light that lives in my TV and loves me. Days later I realize it’s true—the revolution has passed me by.

Maureen Seaton has authored seventeen poetry collections, both solo and collaborative—most recently, Fibonacci Batman: New & Selected Poems (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2013); and, with Denise Duhamel, Caprice: Collaborations: Collected, Uncollected, and New (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2015). Her awards include the Iowa Poetry Prize, Lambda Literary Award, the Publishing Triangle’s Audre Lorde Award, the Society of Midland Authors Award, and an NEA Fellowship. Her work has been honored in both the Pushcart Prize Anthology and Best American Poetry. Her memoir, Sex Talks to Girls, also won a Lammy. She teaches at the University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida.

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