How Now Brown Cow - Poem by James Reiss
was what we said back in New Jersey
when it was cool to like Ike and skip school
though truthfully brown Jersey cows
were outnumbered by black-and-white Holsteins
north of Teaneck when whole milk said moo
to rickety slogans that skinny was chic.
Nah, the Garden State never kowtowed
to low fat before Twiggy got famous
& Secaucus's pig farms shut down so factory
outlets could oink where hogs used to stink.
Strip malls built on landfill had not yet replaced
the acres of undrained salt flats
that sprouted with cattails like wow.
In Woodcliff Lake where he lived up the street
Yogi Berra joked, I wanna go to the bat room.
We didn't know if he meant Louisville Sluggers
or he needed to go to the john, but we knew
he was speaking in tongues & we said, Holy cow.
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