Tuesday, March 8, 2011

autobiography of a poet (kinda like a poem, but really long)

you can flush the system with alcohol
words always mean more in the summer
when doubt gets caught in the screen
the words of thought drowned out by the fan
phrases lingering at the tip of thought
waiting to cascade down the mind to the tongue
embark on their journeys into the world
meandering and flashing and twisting

"i thought i'd feel different"
the words that follow
every one of life's major disappointments
every forbidden thing tried for the first time
drugs, alcohol, sex
things to write about looking back
things to romanticize looking back
though at the time we barely blinked
and it was on to the next new thing

i haven't found anything to want here yet
in Michigan it was easy - a cabin by the water
somewhere to smoke and read and drink and write
a lakeside window to tell all my secrets to
and i could imagine the lake was the ocean
and dream up stories of selkies and mermaids
and imagine myself one, as i lounged on the rocks
calling you to my world
to the death of yours
and i would always be safe
as long as i remembered to occasionally bring copper for Mishipeshu
and you would always be safe, too, safe with me

in Tucson it was different, chaotic, the beauty of destruction
turning myself over and over, trying to find the best face to show
i wanted a shack in the desert
something to call mine
somewhere no-one else was likely to come
a place to hide with my whiskey
get a gun like a cowboy
or maybe a sword
and dream up desert warriors, fighting lions in the Sahara
or running with lions
or becoming a lion

human situations are consistent
and so are human needs
if only i could find the pattern of my own
what makes me happy
what makes me real
what makes me think that i'm in love with a person, place, or thing

human situations are consistent
all this is great, but
i need something only i can figure out

the other day
my perfect daydream companion and i
were off wandering and
i felt euphoria on the highway
cities and scenery and signs and vehicles and . . .
if you want to know the truth
i was never happier
than when i drove from tucson to ann arbor alone

so i find myself next to the ocean
but a mermaid i've yet to meet
and i miss the signs of journey
the freighters i could imagine riding away on
and i miss the desert, the dust on my feet
so much beauty here i've yet to fall for
i guess that's just it
what keeps me here
that the discovery is yet to be made
the beauty yet to be found
the daydreams yet to be internalized


  1. i hate the end of trip too...

    i love michigan from may thru october...the other 7 suck...

    well written and eye opening..

  2. No, you are not the only one who gets depressed when arriving home from a trip. I just did this.