Rob Carney

“He’s Such a Good Listener”


I knew a man who made money

from having three ears.


While some stood in line

at the plow shop, waiting for their turn


to get sharpened,

and golfers


hunkered on greens

and bells rang at school,


he performed the trick of listening

all afternoon.


Professional nods.

Some autopilot smiling. . . .


His secret was that his third ear

cancelled out the others,


while also picking up the talk

of distant whales.


Rob Carney is the author of four previous books of poems, most recently 88 Maps (Lost Horse Press 2015). His fifth collection, The Book of Sharks, is forthcoming from Black Lawrence Press in July 2018. He lives in Salt Lake City. He is a regular contributor toTerrain.org