Spoonful: A Gathering of Stone Soup Poets

An extension of Cambridge's Stone Soup Poetry Venue.

"Path of A Possum" by Gordon Marshall

Illustration by Samantha Scott-Heron


Black figure
Of a robin
Rests in a green pine

In 1971
In Hingham,
In my back yard.

I dream of stealing
The eggs,
Dream the tree itself

Is a ravenous bird,
Jealously jamming my finger
In its woody beak.

The emaciated children
Of Vietnam
From the TV screen

Sicken me, haunt my days.
Agent orange
May as well have been

A pal of Maxwell Smart,
So far was the war to me.
The Japs scared me shitless

When they bombed McHale
And Binghamton

This at the time
Of US carpet bombing
In Hanoi,

Hawaii in 1941
Times ten,
In the name of a cause

I hadn’t the dimmest knowledge of
Let alone the fact itself,
Let alone the hippie protests

Flooding up
Even to the White House steps.
Yet it was the ideological battle

Fueling the music I heard
Dimly at first
On Saturday morning cartoons,

Even The Way-Outs on The Flintstones,
Jumping up like mushrooms
To trippy tunes—

Dimly at the onset, but soon
To take me through my

Stooped on my mother’s stool at the kitchen counter
Listening to the hits
On the tabletop radio.

What was war but pushing back the Germans,
The Charge of the Light Brigade,
On twilit fields.

Nixon the hapless beast
Was the first American hypocrite
I knew

Squelching the myth of the spy
I knew from Live and Let Die
Speeding an outboard motor

Across English gardens
The lost Beatle Paul
Pulsing out the theme

With a guitar as winning as ever
But heard with an ear in which the fruit
Of knowledge had dripped its hard liquor.