Doing the Death We Call Pretty
I could look to the trees rusting in the rain,doing the death we call pretty. Instead, I lorda little over people parking, coming & going remark silenton their body language—what gait is revealing—while I wait by the printer for a reportI don’t even need. The chore, it let me rememberthe world, free & flowing. On the hospital elevatorthis morning, an ancient head-scarfed womanw/a beard, wheeled by four jockeying children.A young, halfway-pregnant couple. A woman my mother’s shapein a bob wig, on her way to the breast clinic.A surgeon’s Crocs streaked w/purple-brown blood.Jackson Pollock. In the caf, a man tosses friesinto his mouth for breakfast, his entire head & eyesbandaged up, white & soft as a Q-tip. Visionis my drug. I can’t tell if it’s working, b/c howdid my life become a sequence of how do I killthe next ten minutes? & the next ten? & the next?When is someone going to finally turn to me & say,all this time, what have you been doing?It will be an accusation, & a mercy.
Copyright © 2018 by Stevie Howell
All rights reserved.
Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission.
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