I do not think I have ever
spent a day without at least
a gorgeous moment in which
I am afraid of someone, present
or not, or past or present or future.
There or not. The former air base
(what a concept - air base) then
nuclear-air-base (more conceptual
still?) is going to be the site for
the city's new high school. No one
seems overly concerned about how
much of who-knows-what was
dumped there over four decades.
Bob Wright said some stoves and
refrigerators and early computers and
all sorts of stuff were just thrown
into a landfill (what a concept -land-
fill) there by the govt. Bob Wrong
says nothing of this sort was done,
was done, was done. And then the latter
takes vitriolic aim at someone less
fortunate. The shorts are tighter
this year on the married men and
the married women. There is a
new philosophy in new
IS THE SAME AS THE PERSON IN FRONT OF ME
lived in a town about as big as this room.
leaned this way and that in the sun.
If and when
lived to be eighty years old or so
smallish paintings with sometimes
black or red marks near the faces of
portraits. If women reached eighty
to walk suddenly out of doors on
days. They would disappear in
ways. People stayed inside at other times crying
for beginnings. But words were coming from fear for
so long the
crying was short and uneventful and even
or seven views of the same sand bar or
point or the same mask or the same once.
I woke up this a.m. and I felt
lousy - lonely too.
In one dream
it was my turn to talk at a
12-step meeting, and just as I did
more than half the people got up
and left. Fifteen
minutes is a lot
to a flea. But how
would I know
for sure? I said I
was a success
story. I didn't
take credit, I spoke
of other hills and vistas. Maybe
my tone was lonely.
I also dreamed
that frogs who knew I loved creatures
so much they would simply attach
themselves to me when they saw me
coming - and a lovely very smallish
green bird alighted on and off from
my finger as I walked around a town -
this was lovely and light but then the
dream had a slight portent sense to it
- and when I e-mailed this portion of
the dream, to two friends, I closed
with the joke of "a broken record poem" -
then the dream had a slight portent
sense to it / then the dream had a slight
portent sense to it / then the dream...
Soon you won't be able to sound like a
broken record. You
can't sound like a
broken tape, or a broken CD, or can you?
Michael Burkard is the author of My Secret Boat (Norton), Entire Dilemma and Unsleeping (both with Sarabande).
Poems appear in recent or forthcoming issues of APR, Parakeet,
Court Green, 32 Poems, Smartish Pace, and Shade.