Alan Toltzis

Hesitation Blues

Twenty-four years of power and pleasure
exchanged for eternity. Sure, there was full disclosure
but Faustus never saw Hell as personal
or flammable
or how it dogs you so damned long.
He was just plain wrong.
Getting it completely backwards for someone so smart
must really smart.

From fancy couture, to slave, houseboy,
prisoner, and finally pharaoh’s viceroy.
Twenty-two years for Joseph’s dreams to consolidate.
There’s someone who knew how to wait
for his brothers and him to finally meet
bowing like bundled and bent sheaves of wheat.



Hey, Your Fly Is Down

That snag
on your sweater.

The small splotch
of tomato soup on your tie.

Even heaven
was right there all along.

Gates wide

Ophanim, seraphim,
a cherub or two for good measure,

up and down all night long.
How could anyone sleep with all that traffic?

Did I mention the ladder?
And in the light of morning, God beckoning?

Hellooooo. . . . Jaaaaacob. . . 
This way!

Jacob missed it.

he finally figured it out.

Everything is
right in front of us:

blazing like an infrared billboard
in a visible-spectrum universe.




Alan Toltzis is a strategic marketing consultant from Yardley, PA. He is writing a book of poems that uses each of the 54 weekly Torah portions as a starting point. He can be reached at: