Poem: The Wrong Side of My Mouth

By: Gary Steven Corseri, Ph.D

There were times when I spoke

     out of the wrong side of my mouth.

I didn’t mean to.

It just came out that way.

I was going along fine,

delivering some disquisition

on a literary theme,

when, suddenly, the wrong side of my mouth


I tried to explain: “This isn’t me!

It’s not what I mean!”

But it came out garbled.

The wrong side of my mouth said,

     “This is the truth!”

With my tail between my legs,

holding my head in my hands,

I retreated amidst a chorus of jeers.

The wrong side of my mouth shot back:

“Cretins!  Neanderthals!  Fuck-offs!”

“You can’t say that in polite company,”

I berated the wrong side of my mouth.

“I have my reputation to–”

“Fuck you!” said the wrong side of my mouth.

I have been wandering the byways now

for 50 years. …

I am the Vietnam vet asking for spare change.

I am the old woman who lost her babies.

I am the man on the bus who cries for no reason.

The wrong side of my mouth

hooks up with the corner of my eye.

A ghost of a chance joins them.

Fire! Fire everywhere!

Poetry at Brave New World

About the author: Dr. Gary S. Corseri’s poems, fiction and dramas have appeared at numerous online and hard-copy venues such as CounterCurrents, L.A. (and Hollywood) Progressive, The New York Times, Dissident Voice, CounterPunch, Village Voice and CommonDreams, in addition to Brave New Worlditself. He has performed his work at The Carter Presidential Library and Museum.Dr. Corseri has also published two novels (including ‘Holy Grail, Holy Grail’), a literary anthology, two collections of poems. Apart from that, his dramas have been performed on Atlanta-PBS and elsewhere. Click here to mail him.