Two Poems By Richard LeDue

One for Raymond Louis Heenan

I hated him

when I was kid,

how he convinced Andre to turn on Hogan,

cheated the Warrior out of the belt,

but as an adult, 

I loved him

because he was great at acting

like a weasel: 

coming up with insults,

then hiding behind someone more muscular,

and maybe this regular looking guy

in tacky shiny clothes

was more like the rest of us

than his character or the rest of us

wanted to admit,

but he died

because that’s what we all do-

his legacy preserved on a DVD

or grainy VHS tapes they used to trade,

while I write this poem,

pretending it’ll outlast them all.

Overthinking a Classic

How can we know 

the Koopa Trooper in Mario Kart 

has always been the same one?

What if he asked for too much money

after the first game

because he found out how much Yoshi was paid?

This might explain why he doesn’t race on the N64.

Then, he was out of work for a while,

had to pawn off his kart

and couldn’t rebuy it within in thirty days, 

so being forced to go back on guard duty

outside of Bowser’s castle,

he took solace in signing the occasional autograph

(also always being asked why he was fired,

only for him to say he quit)

in between looking up, wondering

if he could smell mushrooms in the air.

His triumphant return actually someone else,

who is contractually obligated not to mention

or comment on

the original Koopa Trooper.

Richard LeDue (he/him) lives in Norway House, Manitoba with his wife and son. His poems have appeared in various publications throughout 2021. His second chapbook, “The Kind of Noise Worth Writing Down,” is forthcoming in early 2022 from Kelsay Books.

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