April 13, 2011

A Poem, or Almost One

Voices call me from the void, and I,
practiced at ignoring them, hear
only snatches.  Oh, not that it matters,
for I know that they lie anyway.  The
things that matter to me now are shells.
I am beyond feeling anything, beyond
making the necessary connections required
for emotion, beyond worrying about verb
tenses, unintentional sharps and flats,
missed cues, bad lines, incorrect exposures,
forced rhymes.  I am beyond all that;
it is a sort of history, though not
history exactly.  It (the history) is
buried like a time capsule.  And as I
run past the fourteenth line (did Shakespeare
feel a pang at this point?  Was it the
call of nature that he was heeding?)
I realize that it is gone, and no longer
does it exist in any accessible form.
No, check that, I am not even interested
in shells any more.  I am only interested
in the moment, and only at the microscopic tip
of the pen, the moment rushing on, on,
to what?  the end, I assume.  To be truthful,
I am interested in only this, this and
nothing more, and my interest fades faster
than the ink can dry.  For me, the sputtering
pen represents death, and I live as long as
the moment refuses to swallow itself.

from Oblivion
written Spring 1982

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