David Bristol

The Mechanical Jew

for Merrill Leffler

“If he had hands,
he’d never write a poem,”
he told himself while dreaming of diesels
and boats.

Modern him, in love with oil,
gears, cars,
the Brooklyn Bridge and steam,
power and speed. He wished
that his hands were full,
that he liked his own sweat.

Naturally, in turn of mind only,
he appreciates the engines of wandering.


David Bristol is a retired lawyer. He is the author of four books of poetry: The Hour of the Poem Poem (New Academia/Scarith Press, 2015), Toad and Other Poems (The Bunny and the Crocodile Press, 2002), Paradise and Cash (Washington Writers Publishing House, 1980) and The Monk Who Made His Mamma Happy (The Bunny and the Crocodile Press, 1977). To read more from this author: 6 excerpts from Toad