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The New Criterion

It operates as a refuge for a civilizing element in short supply in contemporary America: honest criticism
- The Wall Street Journal


October 2006

The auctioneer

by F. D. Reeve

Evening, ladies; evening, gents;
    salute you by the dozen, embrace you by the score;
we’ve got things here worth fifteen cents
    and others worth a million more.
Get your numbers, don’t miss a chance
    to bear the rifle Captain Brown once bore
    or touch the lace that trimmed Miss Marilyn’s underpants.
When playing cards were bare on back
    folks filled ’em in as invites to the local square;
now here’s a photo that will pack
    your venue with a hundred cats who’ll dare
play the G-string on this human cello—
this ain’t the F-clef on a bowl of jello—
    Who’ll give me ten? Ten! Make it twenty.
Sixty. Eighty. A hundred! No argumenty
    from me ...

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F. D. Reeve isF.D. Reeve's most recent book of poetry is The Return of the Blue Cat (Other Press).

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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 25 October 2006, on page 32

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