All about the details though the cloth itselfIt’s all about the details though the clothitself should be well-made and suited tothe purpose. Take an epaulette where boththe twill and perfect corners lead you througha military primer. Red or whiteor blue are best, no-nonsense colors: takeno prisoners, never smile, and might makes right.A button holds the tab, a sash will makea drape, a softness which belies the madand futile march of war which rips the clothof skin, the one true cloth that makes us glad,whose rips, beyond repair, create the lossthat finds no purpose in that epaulette.What wasted buttons, twill, and yet we let.
The trick is keeping everything so tightThe trick is keeping everything so tightit never leaks. You know the things I mean:You shut your mouth at hair she keeps so lightand permed, the follicles cry out. That seamyou mend three times a day to keep your faithin God from splitting flakes in angry shards.The boss you know was born a dark ring wraithis likely clinically depressed. The guardsyou placed around your mouth, your hands, your mind,remind you that your homeland must be pure.You could not bear, you cannot bear to findthat lust and greed were set up to endure.Remember when the Klingons probed Spock’s mind?But you’re not Spock. I wonder what they’ll find.
You never chose the middle pathYou never chose the middle path, the placeof careful, safe and unremarkable,the sky at 10 am, the camp at base,the decaf paper cup unbreakable.You had to go with high and low and real,with rich and fast and things more notable:the sky at midnight, Himalayan-feel,the oxygen and you, unstoppable.But then your weight became too much for skies.Your melamine became a china cup.And those who cried moved on to lesser highs.They look ahead, or down, but never up.You never chose the middle path, you raced.I’m looking up, and pray that speed is graced.
The meat I eatThe meat I eat was raised with cruelty.The clothes I wear were sewn in factoriesthat toppled down. The cold realitythat death drives economics fuels more lies.The wages that I earn have nearly felledthis tired body. Meeting deadlines trumpsthe queen of hearts, who ran and jumped and yelledon my behalf, it’s midnight, stop! Blood pumpsadrenaline; brain tries to acquiesceto strange demands it doesn’t understand.No track of tears flows past dry pity’s sluice.The chickens, sewers, earners—cannot stand.And NPR said workers work just fiveof eight straight hours. That’s jive, just lying jive.
You wish you were that deerYou wish you were that deer, to graze and cropthe grass and munch some more, and never say,I wonder if I ate too much. You dropten pounds in winter, trying hard to stayalive in rain and snow and cold. You move—no tender grass—to evergreens. You tastethe woody things, the bark. You do not lovethis winter forage; still, you would not wastethat mouthful—yellow spruce. You chew and chewand swallow, chew again. Just yesterdayyou saw the robins. In the frozen dewyou yank a blade. This patience is your way.You jerk awake. Go back to work. No spring.You chew that meaningless and woody thing.
At first I likedAt first I liked that Bob was tall and showeda deference to my quirks. But still it bugsme that he smirks when others fail. It slowedmy ardor till my heart no longer tugs.The start with Luke was fast and sweet, he stolemy heart with squinty looks but then those mugswere aimed at other girls. I see his goalis him, not me, and when I ask, he shrugs.The day I met Pierre, we talked and drankcafé au lait. We’re both as cute as pugsor poodles, yet the floaty feeling shrankwhen politics revealed he thinks like thugs.So love’s elixir doesn’t come in jugsbut drams and handsome boys are often slugs.
make it, fix it, freeze itmake it, fix it, freeze it in a bell jarhigh above the cloudsthis fixing of all thingswhich contradictschange, movement, creationTuesday you liked the ideaby Sunday you had second thoughtstwo separate storiestwo different outcomesyou try them out alternativelyand decide to stayhere and now
Tickled by yourselfHe said, you can’t be tickled by yourself.You know, you always know. The primitiveOr basic brain detects the source. You tellSome lies but touch is truth. The neurons’ sieveWill pass this truth from skin to brain. It knowsThe self from other. Though you crave a roof,Safe passage crossing night to day, need showsIt cannot satisfy itself. AloofOr numb to need, those others cross bare landsInsensitive to truth though truth is inThe very touch. Some day, with open hands,They’ll beg like everyone, confessing sin.Then neurons’ sieve will pass this truth from skinto brain, but will that rare compassion win?
Lie down in fragrant dirtLie down in fragrant dirt, the field unplowed.This is a dream of course, you can’t go back.Lie down in summer—summer’s still allowedFor those who know that now is real and fact.Lie down in fields of gold while Sting sings songsOf love you found when young but lost when old.Lie down in fields of snow when sadness longsFor ends, but rise to tell remaining life untold.Lie down because you can, and not becauseYou must. Lie down for love and sleep and rest.For saying no to endless work, and pause.How else to know that life is not a test?Lie down in fields of gold, this harvest grownBy you, and rest before the sun goes down.