Drinking With the Dead by John Oughton

Poet name: John Oughton Poem title: Drinking with the Dead Poem: No thirst like that from bones dry to the marrow leached and bleached. I am alone above ground. The dead excellent company. They listen, wisely adding nothing. Do not rail at red hawk sitting on a tombstone, deer grazing their graves squirrel burying its small tribute. I take them fine brews Belgian and German, a sip for me, then one for the arid earth but only for the dormant poets. Those Eatons and Masseys already hoisted the best. They can wait for Molson Canadian and like it. So, a toast to the dead – Their city of silence, soft presence on the air. End of poem. Credits: Copyright © John Oughton Previously published in Big Pond Rumours e-zine, 2017. John Oughton was born in Guelph, Ontario, a block from the home of John McCrae (author of “In Flanders Fields”). He worked at Coach House Press and as a journalist and corporate communicator. He attended the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University, and served as research assistant to Allen Ginsberg and Anne Waldman. John retired from the position of Professor of Learning and Teaching at Centennial College. He has published a mystery novel, Death by Triangulation, five books of poetry, most recently Time Slip (Guernica Editions, 2010), several chapbooks, and over 400 articles, interviews, reviews and blogs. He is also a photographer with solo shows and book and magazine cover credits. For fun, he plays guitar. His new book Higher Teaching, a primer for new university and college teachers, will be out from Guernica Editions in Spring, 2021