By William J. Joel

He didn’t have the right last name; 
too many letters for the average spine 
and far too many consonants. 
And though he’s written several books, 
it’s hard to find them in the store; 
the place his name holds in 
the alphabet means all his books 
are destined for the lower shelves, 
too far below for casual eyes, 
or those of us with knees that ache. 
And that is why he teaches freshman classes 
how to differentiate between 
the use of “then” and “than”, 
and other follies scribbled quick 
on loose-leaf pages ripped along their coil.


William J. Joel has been a poet, storyteller and educator for many, many years. Most recently, his work has appeared in Aunt Chloe and Wolf Moon Journal. In addition to adult poetry, he has written works for children. In 2008 he was Contributing Editor for two issues of Appleseeds.

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