Dreaming of Paradise

Birthday Candle

My Lord asked me what I wanted for my birthday this year.

“Do you think we can all
Stop hating,
Just for a couple of days?
Do you think we can all
Be honest enough
To admit our hatred
And stop?”

My Lord said nothing but gave me hug
And we cried together for a time.


The Day After August 6 (9)

We are all afraid of the monster under the bed
The beast in the shadows of the closet
The vampires in the attic
The giant spiders in the shower
The aliens in the spare room.

We fear these. And we all fear the fire beasts
The ones that burn but are not consumed,
That ooze puss from open sores
And bear half melted faces.
We fear their bloated bodies
And shrill screeches.
We fear the sound of their puking in public.
We fear them when they
Surprise us in our dreams.
And we fear their silence most of all.

When we look in the mirror,
And when we are honest,
We see them standing behind us
Staring at us
Not with malice or hatred or hunger
Like you might expect from a half-melted fire beast,
But with confusion.

With their stare they only ask
And they only ask one question:

We scream in horror at the question
At its implication
And we hide our faces
Our fears and tears
Under Ms. Ross’s famous quilt
Until we can convince ourselves that everything
Is ok.

Even though it obvious to everyone
That it isn’t.

Heir to a Certain Business

He didn’t hesitate.
He knew exactly what he was going to wear:
Black shoes, black socks,
Black slacks, black belt,
White shirt, black tie,
Black vest, back coat.
The uniform and the job
Had evolved over the years
Over the generations
But he put on the suit with the same
And surety
As his father and grandfather
And great-grandfather as far back
As anyone knew.

He tied a single Windsor
His skeletal fingers more agile
Than you might expect.

Had his neck not been so thin
Then he might have strangled himself
When he tightened his tie.

But he was thin.
The bulky layers over his
Bony frame hid
Just how thin.

No hat though, as he went out the door.
Hats weren’t any more fashionable than the
Cowls that were on the old uniform.

He checked his reflection in the mirror one last time.
His head was bald and sun bleached.
His tie straight
His smile more like a grinning skull
Than an approachable salesman.

Thankfully he never had to worry about business:
His customers were more reliable
Than those of the tax accountant.

Which reminded him,
(and he sent himself an email as he left)
He had to file his taxes.
Maybe the tax accountant could cut him a deal

In trade of course.


Sometimes it doesn’t matter what you do
So long as you do something.
My teachers often told me
“Every choice is deliberate,
Even the choice to not choose.”
Doing nothing is
In this sense still doing something
As such, it is better
To do something,
Than it is to do nothing

And to do nothing deliberately.

Fucking Spider

I recall the
disembodied, tobacco cobwebs.
The spider who wove them
spilled out of a glass bowl
while her ashen ass spun out
more and more and more.

I think she was high.
There were pain killers
and a tall bottle of vodka nearby.
She must have been high.

Soon the cobwebs merged together
more like wisps.
There were fewer pills on the table.
The wisps were like a mist.
The bottle was nearly empty.
A fog settled over the room.

The pills were gone
the vodka missing
and we were lost in the spider’s fog.

Sometimes it feels like
I’m still there.
Like I’m wandering lost and lonely
in a tobacco London Fog.
Sometimes I wish I was still there.

Then I recall my shame.
Not that I had been there.
Everyone, for the most part,
has been there.
No, my shame is that when I had a chance to leave,
I wanted to leave that fucking spider
And then nearly did.

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