Big Frog

It is nasty,
the ugly froggy thing with the mud brown face
that leaves its ooze when it scrambles past.
It is hasty,
squishing down the lane we walk on,
pouring out the last muck in its storage tank.
It is wastey,
turning all the world to filth with its signature
and canning it like sewage jelly.
What’s left
is what we call
What’s left now
is what we called
This is our world.
That frog hopped out of our heads.
Now its tongue stabs at us like flies on the compost.

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3 Comments on “Big Frog”

  1. Vivian Says:

    Wow!! Your poetry never fails to move me. but I don’t know how to comment on it. Archibald MacLeish said it best.
    Ars Poetica
    by Archibald MacLeish

    A poem should be palpable and mute
    As a globed fruit,

    As old medallions to the thumb,

    Silent as the sleeve-worn stone
    Of casement ledges where the moss has grown-

    A poem should be wordless
    As the flight of birds.


    A poem should be motionless in time
    As the moon climbs,

    Leaving, as the moon releases
    Twig by twig the night-entangled trees,

    Leaving, as the moon behind the winter leaves,
    Memory by memory the mind-

    A poem should be motionless in time
    As the moon climbs.


    A poem should be equal to:
    Not true.

    For all the history of grief
    An empty doorway and a maple leaf.

    For love
    The leaning grasses and two lights above the sea-

    A poem should not mean,
    But be.

    Your poetry embodies this.

    • That is one of the nicest things anyone has ever said about my poems. Thank you. I love the poem you quoted here by MacLeish. It is one of the very very few things I still remember from high school.

  2. Simone Says:

    Carroll, sometimes your imagery, alone, makes me lift my head in thought, wonder and surprise. The concluding two lines of this poem have again provided me with such a moment. This poem feels content on being resolved, and seems to acknowledge a certain kind of fate about the world and existence, particularly suggested in the primordial image and perpetual interference, if you will, of the frog. Your poems always seem quietly didactic, which is partly why they are so easy to engage. Thank you, once more, for sharing your voice.

    And I love the poem by MacLeish that Vivian has posted. It has one of my favorite small passages.

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