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“Pregnant, Senior, Disabled” With Music

 

Yoshi Higa added some music to my recent poem, and I believe that it might be delightful. Typed up version should be belowz.

Have a nice day and stuff.

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A General Feeling

There is no such thing as a general feeling.

There are only movements

that push dust onto other dust.
 

When it got too calm, we went for a walk

and dined on the clinch of summer

and the rising tide of skin.

I heard a murmur and there wasn’t any wind.

I got a phone call.

She said she found out the other day

that she was allowed to say no to herself.

But, she would still only drink from mason jars

She would only tell a story if she hadn’t told it to anyone else.

She kept on talking as the pastel blues drifted in the dim sky.

A boy pushed a child in a stroller and another boy ran behind. 

The wind came through and it nipped at her scarf.

It nipped at my ankles. 

I saw Daniel take a picture of the eighteen year old kids who sat by the lake

with their weebly legs sticking out.

And I remember being that age.

I wonder if I had more figured out at that age,

is what she says to me. 

I wonder if I learned to just care less. 

Daniel walked past us and nodded and made his way back up the hill.

Things carried themselves quiet and loose.

The wind was gone again.

If there were such a thing as silent thunder.

I heard it then.

She looked at me, and crossed her legs

and she said something I would always remember.

 
It wasn’t this:

There is no such thing as a general feeling.

Chapter Two

I had a hangover when I saw the birds. In a flurry, their movements blossomed above a cascade of cars belting northbound. There were two flocks. They approached and admired each other, seeming to bow almost, a mutuality recognized, and the pair began this festive dance, the one group swayed and mixed with the second group, they bulged and proceeded to collaborate, birds from the first mixed into the second, then they split, then reformed under new factions, only to recalibrate, to sway and turn as a unit and mash quick and elegant back into one, to collide in a periscope of nature, a silent paradox that split upward, that split in half, that stood as simple and transparent as sheared paper against the horizon , that fluttered in diagonals and deft shifts, sublime movement appearing at once dark as it dove against the cliff face and bright as the fever of an autumn sun as it climbed upwards, altogether gallant and lifeless, two identical forms merging and deviating back into two different yet identical forms again, they spread apart a final time only to be reunited, as one true flock, that flys under some autonomous principal, to some imbued forever distant destination, answering only to their flock, to their deathless drone, as they moved past the view of my windshield.

I looked back on the highway, the other cars breezed past my peripheral view, silent and choiceless, I can’t hear them, they can’t hear me, I can’t hear their nature, they cannot allow for the possibility that their ramifications to be true, that their force is a tangible entity, that they themselves must reckon with.  The speed, the noise, the numbers, the danger, the blurring of steel into gargantuan bullets, falsely silent within the confines, the stereos as antiseptic, all this, all that this is, is impeded upon. You don’t notice when things drip past the point of no return, when there is no hope, but despair isn’t an option, since obliviousness has taken hold, since you’re at the helm, after so much time, chaos and disintegration unwillingly becomes the norm. And it takes an explosive event to knock you back to the ground. It always come as a surprise when it happens, surely unbelievable, but in the afterglow it becomes more comprehensibly right, accurate, needed even. But everything is so damn wonderful before this happens.

I keep on learning the same thing over and over again, only in a different tone, with a different name. I don’t know if that it makes it more true, or me more incapable of changing anything. Maybe this is a universal truth that bears repeating, that bears to be stamped down into permanence. I get discouraged too easily, I guess. So I paid my bills off, unplugged the phone, picked up my mail and left town for a couple of days.


Genuine Observers

Getting older was something I did when I was younger.

That’s pretty much it.

There isn’t a complicated poem with a metaphor.

There isn’t a story.

There isn’t a pattern.

There is what I learn, when I learn it, and then I apply it to my life.

Theories need outlets.

Or they blow a fuse, break a gasket.

The primacy of I,

You can always feed off abstractions.

I’ve been playing tag with my invisible friend,

He will never catch me.

Playing King

I’m having trouble finding where to start.

I find myself late in moments. Dizzy in a hue of spurting stanzas, babbling syllables.

Friends talk about art and community and it makes sense. There is a hook and taste.

No reel or bait.

I pour one more.

Breathe easier, nobody asks any questions anyway.

 

I think about mimicry and copying. I read other peoples words, think about where they were, how they were,

Were they on the beach? Were they drinking coffee and looking out a window like mine?  Were they cold anxious on bus lines, with shit show posture and a lazy gait?

Tennyson must’ve hated himself and struggled like this, even mystics have off days. 

 John was a loon, he wanted Henry to live so much he walked off a bridge.

But, I can’t see Joanna tearing out her hair over a verse.

She must’ve wrote it all in one sitting, knew the words as soon as the music drifted in.

 

They say universal themes are something we can always come back to; but sometimes I feel it is something we’re running towards,

Away from the tougher ideas, the myths, the prose, the cancers, the death, the fleeting ambiguity, the crunch of bones and tissue, sweat. Those things we run away from,

end up being what we run towards,

and everything has this symmetry,

that wrong is right,

because it was the wrong we were one to perform.

Thus all ideas have become things,

And we restore, repeat, mimic,

And immortalize in dust against a fingertip.

 

I pour another. Someone else will pour another tonight.

These daily interactions are like a silent sister, they will never meet the blind light of day.

Lost on a mountain, away from taxes, schedules and health care.

Art is performed in boxes.

I’m the same.

I lock myself in my box and work.  

But nobody is watching.

 

Tonight, there are stars hidden beneath the clouds, and there is a man singing on the corner.

His knees are taut and he swings back and forth like he should, closing his eyes when he hits the right note.

All his buttons are buttoned. His shirts tucked in. It’s past midnight. Whos this guy kidding?

There’s a crumpled dollar bill and some nickels lying in his case.  The sage leans in after his song and asks him,

“Do you know Sam Doores?”

“Why he’s been a good friend for three years.”

He swears and the car doors thump close. 

 

On good days, it’ll bite our hands, even when we aren’t trying to shake it.

We sing to ancient footprints on the sand to return to us, to tell us the form, to tell us how.

We sing to the callouses on our hands,

They beg us “Just one more time.”

When there’s work to be done, the beginnings don’t stray.

They are constant like a watermark, they never descend or change.

They find themselves where the middle and the end meet their place.

And the birds watch us, away at their perch.

We are their theater.

 

Henry, the other Henry, begged us, to speak for those who cannot speak.

Those mute to the rhythym of the spirits.

So I speak.

I say beginnings know nothing of death, truth and beauty.

They lay upon mountaintops,

Thinking ahead of their place.

We are one, we are the same, we have become things.