poetry quarterly

10th anniversary


Brian Gilmore



sugar mama i met in the wee wee hours;
was it ten years ago
or was it thirty days?

sugar mama who gave me the key to the highway
sugar mama who got my mojo working
sugar mama whose toes i would kiss

sugar mama the light of my eye
sugar mama makes me drink hot whiskey
sugar mama had me runnin’ roun’ the house
lookin’ for a drink

sugar mama too good to me
sugar mama evil
sugar mama like smokestack lightnin’

don’ start me talkin’ sugar mama
don’ start me talkin’

you have to reconsider baby
reconsider what you’ve done

cuz i’m a man sugar mama
i’m your hoochie coochie man

i’m waitin’ by the telephone
just waitin’ by the phone

got the almos’ empty liquor bottles
and the empty pack of smokes
got the worried life blues baby
got the blues with a feelin’

cuz it ain’t no secret, sugar mama
this is the first time i don’ met the blues

seems like ten years ago
only been thirty days



Brian Gilmore is the author of two books of poems, elvis presley is alive and well and living in harlem, (Third World Press 1993) and Jungle Nights and Soda Fountain Rags: Poem for Duke Ellington (Karibu Books 2001). A native Washingtonian, he currently teaches at Michigan State University College of Law.


Published in Volume 12, Number 1, Winter 2011.


To read more by this author:
Brian Gilmore
Gilmore's Introduction to Vol, 2, No. 4 (Fall 2001)
Gilmore on Waring Cuney: Memorial Issue
Brian Gilmore: DC Places Issue
Brian Gilmore: Evolving City Issue
Brian Gilmore: Split This Rock Issue
Brian Gilmore: Audio Issue
Brian Gilmore: It's Your Mug Anniversary Issue
Brian Gilmore: Tenth Anniversary Issue
Brian Gilmore on Drum & Spear Bookstore: Literary Organizations Issue
Brian Gilmore on May Miller: Poetic Ancestors Issue