Peter Bloxsom

Murphy’s Memorabilia

by Aaron Poochigian

Tim is snoozing, and I snoop for the truth:
What spawned his team of life-long loves and swarm
Of life-long vices? Photos of a youth
With hornrims sporting a scout uniform
Show promise; mallards mounted on a shelf,
High goals, but give me something, something odd —
Why did he breathe Jim Beam to drown himself
For forty years before embracing God?

Though one could cite the Irish in his veins
And predilections outlawed on the Plains
Each as excuse enough for getting plastered,
I always wind up marveling that he mastered
A steady style despite such staggering odds.
Sleep on, Tim, lucky in your gift, or God’s.

Aaron Poochigian attended Moorhead State University where he studied poetry under Dave Mason, Alan Sullivan and Tim Murphy. He went on to earn his Phd in Classics from the U. of Minnesota in 2006. His translations of Sappho’s Poems and Fragments (Penguin Classics) will be released this coming Fall.