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by Ed Bennett

“What I don’t understand is why a man like you
took the job in the first place”
- Calvera (Eli Wallach)
“The Magnificent Seven”

I wanted a sombrero
but my wife said “no”
with sweetness in her voice
and a finality in her tone
to end my rumination

except in my dreams
where I ride with Eli Wallach,
that other Brooklyn bandito,
the wind in our faces
as we cross the Sonora,
bandilleros bouncing
to the pace of the gallop,
larceny in our hearts
and adventure in our soul.

But there will be no sombrero
or saguaro raising their arms in salute
to would – be pistoleros astride
imagined horses in a fantasy desert,
asleep, yet free as a grizzled coyote.

I am awake, as always,
with a baseball cap and the reality
of an unkempt lawn in New Jersey,
murmuring “Andale, muchachos!”
as the mower begins to grumble


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