Listen, Shakespeare never said, “All that glistens.”
He said, “All that glisters is not gold.”

William Jennings Bryan was one of our greatest orators.
His most famous speech is known as “The Cross of Gold.”

Of the three gifts the magi gave to Joseph and Mary,
surely two were used at once, but what happened to the gold?

John Keats is not my favorite poet, but I like his sonnet
that begins, “Much have I travel’d in the realms of gold.”

Of course I can’t end this ghazal without that goose,
the giant’s goose Jack stole that laid the eggs of gold.

And, darling, I guess I can’t end it either without that song,
the one with “silver threads among the gold.”

So, Solonche, any more golden nuggets to be told?
Just one, but I’m sorry it’s merely 14 karat fool’s gold.

Professor Emeritus of English at SUNY Orange, J.R. Solonche has been publishing poems in magazines and anthologies since the early 70s. He is author of several books including The Black Birch (Kelsay Books); I, Emily Dickinson & Other Found Poems (Deerbrook Editions); and Invisible, which was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. He lives in the Hudson Valley.