John Yohe

from The Poets Inferno [2]

We left the Circle of those poets who
had published their friends and the cries of Best
American editors—my guide moved

me out into a desert of cactus.
A group of demons pitchforked two figures
rolling on the ground and, until they saw us,

forced to suck their own dicks. And I was sure
I recognized one—an old teacher. ‘No!
David! What have you done?’ The demons stirred.

My guide sighed. ‘This place all poets should know
is for poets-as-editors who choose
their own poems for publication.’ ‘Oh

David,’ I said. But he pointed at this
companion. ‘Major made me, and besides
my poem was in The New Yorker. His

was in The Paris Review.’ Major cried,
‘So what?!’ I said, ‘I saw your friends above.’
‘But Trump! Defend Democrats!’ he replied.

My guide said, ‘Now on to the Circle of
those who award contests to those they love…’

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