April 10, 2013, Four New Ones, Four Old ones (Hollins Era) Copyright Doug Stuber


winner, Dillard’s wife,
purple scarf
for Allan
Chuse, you gave me the

nudge needed to keep
it going, never quit, go
out with a bang, ponder
life’s small and large questions
while also

lust angles
dreamt right in
class, satisfied at

night with others or
myself. Your prose poems proved
the two can meld; I never
believed it before your pen

us all. Your
hooded lips appeared, but
you did not
get the reference
be it ever so

juicy. Your
image, words, luck remain a
blast: a way
to bring the entire
experience back.


It’s never good to get a
student’s name wrong when
so progressive, but
blurt out the
name of the “other” sophomore

who is also proud ,
and an African
American, the same way
you and I are white,
stark raving whiteys.

Henry was smart to launch your
stories, your well-versed
first-hand knowledge on
display, and,
in a sea of books, impact

that resonates in
this scattered mind that
can’t remember what its mouth
ate for lunch. You looked

forward to
having an adjunct Doug as
I cleared out.
That one line meant more
than you imagined

as solid
ink-flow continues to save
the same lost
soul, woeful, lonely-
heart, eat-at-desk man.


The Senator, the
famous art building
that dropped Lee
Hansley, gallerist
now, curator then, yes you

whose friend said
I had done so much
for you, and, with that hint laid
the place we united as
the painter waited.

Muse of the Dinner
Party, having picked
half the wild
known characters for
the novella, as of now

still not quite
published. It’s your eyes,
soccer legs, real auburn hair
and gentle touch that beats down
thick skull, sends sparks from

who knows where.
Cyberspace has yet to yield
your married
name, so this haiku
represents all the

times I came
back to your room, a surprise,
but shoved off:
“you can’t just show up
and expect more love.”

April 7, 8, 9, 2013

Gramp was
born the seventh, and
the lunar one-year toast was
April eighth for the
strong man who

shook Dad’s hand as James
Hyuntay was held out
by Kwang Suk. The ninth is the
birthday of
our patriarch, the

man who would
have made little of
this coincidence. These fine
men mixed hard work with
simple joys

to give offspring all
the chance to achieve
anything they could think of:
large and small
dreams nurtured by such

Harabojay, the first from
Jido to
matriculate at
Yonsei, Gramp, on top

of the ads
and marketing world, friend to
all, William
made photography
a household must-have.


God of Death

Jesus Christ would not be proud
To see religion in this state. (Virginia that is.)
TV evangelists preach a canon of intolerance.
Jesus never expected people to hate in his name.

Building amusement parks in homage to God
Makes as much sense as waging war for Christ.
A god who attracts such diverse attentions
Is not a nice god or even a holy god.

He must be the god of money, or,
The god of land acquisition, or, perhaps
Even the god of death. Now that should
Set bells ringing in your bible-belt ears.

The god of death destroys life and love,
The god of death is worshiped in America.


Soup is Good Food

Coffee grounds, like so much weeping,
Never find a place. You can’t fertilize with tears,
You can’t exasperate yourself with leftovers.

Eggshells, like so much death,
Have no place thinking. You can’t explain their existence,
You dare not whisper in their presence.

Fifties decor, like so much sex,
Never adds to the place. You keep your condoms
Hoping to avoid disease. Never get a chance.

Kodachrome, like so much tax,
Places judgement on obstacles. You grind
Existence into death, snapping housefly moments.

Banana peels, like so much emotion,
Send ball lightning through your place.
Nothing grabs like solo meatloaf dinners.


Ode to the Seedless Thompson Grape

Oh Thompson you’ve done it you devilish man,

Made concords repulsive, made eating so grand.

The sensamilla of fruit I hold in my hand,

My thought is to eat it, what a great plan.

September reminds me to lay a few in,

Ten pounds or so in a Rubbermaid bin.

They might last a month (five weeks if I’m lucky)

By November my tears could turn springwater mucky.

Why cry, asks a friend, over some stupid fruit,

(I’d punch out her eyelids if she weren’t so cute).

Are you kidding I shout, have you no compassion?

How dare you insult my fruit in this fashion!

Next thing you know you’ll attack my banana,

Or musical tastes from Cream to Santana.

Back off little lady, this grape is near perfect,

It’s better than Brando or Raspberry sherbet.

Next year I think I’ll acquire a freezer

And dump this dumb broad just after I squeeze her.

Then I’ll enjoy grapes through the snow

As old vineyards wither and icicles grow.



I sit in Barbee House unnoticed,

Uninvited, a mason jar full

To overflowing:  crushed ice:  an

Original wild berry flavored cooler.

I write, as the jar, wrapped in

A torn brown once-bag.

As the felt on the bag,

Exuding red water-soluble ink.

It rains.  This disappears before you

Read it, and I, the lone alumnus

In this alumnae building, flow

Onto a white manicured davenport.

Then, as sweat pours down my

Hot-humid epidermis of glass

I stop enough to gulp myself

Before the last drop hits the floor.

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