Friday, February 1, 2013

Old Poem #1


another friday downtown

an office is hardly the place to write a poem
but all the bars are full first thing in the morning
& the street corners are occupied until well after noon

by musicians & singers with hats to pass
politicians & beggars with tin cups & soap boxes
biding their time to bay at the harvest moon

the wind whistles to get our attention
the city sleeps later & later each day

so leave for work as soon as you are able
& remember to leave that love note on the dining room table

go into the building & sit at the desk
& hope that the images all go away

climb up the stairs & put down the pen
finally you will forget the way the others do

how autumn makes us all feel red so the colors
of our skins match the colors in our heads

it is the fire again the blood again the leaves again
rubber tires smolder in the parking lot of the post office
& the checks are indeed in the mail
yet no one believes in the power of the snail

until the snow//falls///again

meanwhile, smile when the smoke makes your throat hurt
hit the dirt when you hear the report

the sirens will get closer//closer///the sirens will get here
eventually & tell you that it was all your imagination

you never even got out the front door

pants on one leg at a time/then the shoes
tie that ugly tie sing that beautiful melody/that reminds you of the blues

bring that mechanical pencil & draw them a detailed picture
be the man of the house even though it may not even be your home
& appreciate the fact that you are supposed to be dissatisfied
with how things are here now to make them the way they should be
eventually & make you what you are in your imagination

sing that beautiful melody that reminds you of the blues/though it may be to yourself

even though it may be the sound of a broken copy machine
even though it may be the sound of a leaky faucet
even though it may be the sound of a war

sing that beautiful melody/that reminds you of the blues/though it may be to yourself
all the live long day as the railroaders used to say

over & over & over & over again until it is over & although
the workweek might be over for you
someone must still throw the light switch at dusk
someone must be crazy enough to write the poetry
someone must be bold enough to read aloud
someone must be stupid enough to care

not me though
it is payday & i have a date





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