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Halting Speech

by John Ditsky

I read Cyrillic and I fracture
French; can find facilities

in Germany and Greece; know
just enough of folkway and odd

song to make a wedding
bearable, an amble worth

the time. I have a stamp
collector’s knowledge of Swiss

mail, and fiscal Portuguese.
It’s just my English—this

you know—devolves to utter
stutter as I face you past

the pepper and the salt; turns
slur and cipher: semaphore.

 

John Disky teaches at the University of Windsor. His poems have appeared in many small magazines. (Spring 1975)


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