October 2, 2017 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION

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Alejandro Escudé




Among the Oligarchs



I wonder: would I be able to survive


an early morning raid in my home?


What exactly does a lobbyist do anyhow?


And aren’t we, in some way, lobbying


for something all the time? Tonight,


I alerted my wife that I wanted more time


with her, that we’re involved in too much


and that she doesn’t need to attend


anymore parent meetings at our kids’


school that all those people do is discuss


banalities—that was too Russian of me,


to bully her into obeying though I had


no leverage, no debt to be repaid.


How do you stay sane Paul Manafort?


Your surname better suited to a class


of military ocean vessel than a man.


You just seem so composed, as if the life


of a traitor were simple. What is a traitor


anyway ? A twitter handle? A hockey player?


A can of caviar? The same footage of you


on the news like a GIF, that Easter Island


moai head of yours, and that curious little


athlete’s breath you take, the same breath


I often take at work. Maybe my life too


is conspiratorial, part of a larger scheme


in which I maintain secret contact


with a Russian agent whom I consider


a friend and ally. And I’ve also asked,


repeatedly, that necessary question


“How do we use [this] to get whole?’






Alejandro Escudé

Alejandro Escudé

Alejandro Escudé’s first book of poems, My Earthbound Eye, was published in September 2013. He holds a master’s degree in creative writing from UC Davis and teaches English. Originally from Argentina, Alejandro lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children.

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