Kafka’s Cane

J.R. Solonche

No doubt he wanted
it as a complement to his
black suit and bowler hat,
the ones he wore everyday,
even in summer. Or maybe
he wanted one because
he recalled that Balzac
inscribed the head of his,
I crush all obstacles,
which he could now turn
into, All obstacles crush me.
What a comical figure he
must have made walking to
the workmen’s compensation
office as, every few steps,
crushed by all obstacles,
he fell to his knees, or on
his back, where he flailed
about to right himself,
the cane scribbling parables
in the air.


J. R. Solonche has been publishing in magazines, journals, and anthologies since the early 70s. He is author of Beautiful Day (Deerbrook Editions), Heart’s Content (Five Oaks Press), and coauthor of Peach Girl: Poems for a Chinese Daughter (Grayson Books).

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