the harbor is slick with oil just as the stiff plastic sheeting around the cockpit of this sailboat is slick with cloud. ruinous oh ruin, i stay dry in a dream forest of rain

were there a lectern to
pound, upon it
i would pound.

but what of it,
this effluvial expression
of rage?
what of this
misnamed masculinity
in my skin?

choking on
indoctrination we plastic
play with the form
given us by past
prophets, domineers
always take, giving
in return only
puckered husks
of truthful instruction.

and so now this
lectern that i do not stand
behind well i have
pulverized it to dust.

is this the only
method to express
rage and despair, yes
yes but, oh
no, of course really

might we benefit as
a social organism
from comprehensive
early childhood
could we fold
our spritely tongues
around foreign languages,
yes, and the familiar
foreign-ness of our own
finite time?

oh tidal bodies,
wedded to placid cycles;
come in please
come in and yes,
now go away?

might we lessen our
dependence on cast iron,
sloughing sunsets of
rust, the strength
we are obsessed
with really being the
siren shriek of fear?

we are going to die.
it is not to be

if your priest told you this,
would it toll in your ochre
soul like tongue’d bell?

if your doctor told you
“pill yourself
to absolution”,
would you listen,
sublingual in obedient

who am i to kid,
we don’t believe
these doctors, lying

a white car sits
in a parking lot,
growing itself
green with the
unassuming wisdom
of moss.
it sags on its
exhausted springs.
it breathes silence
from its cancer’d
its front passenger
door hangs ajar, no
longer willing to offer
refuge to humans who
built it to die.
these same humans,
sensing the imminent death
of this car, they
park and turn
their backs and
skitter away,
terrified. dignified,
dignified, the car
does not turn
its headlights off,
does not blind itself from
encroaching obsolescence.

this lectern has long ago
now succumbed
to the rage held in
my pummeling fists,
yet i continue
to beat.
all that is left to strike,
my own body.
its innocence only
provoking further rage.

if my body again
matched the timid
exuberance of my youthful
mind, i might be
allowed to tell myself;

“you are going
to die. this is
ok, it means that
you live.
do not let the anxiety
of your eventual end
pluck from you the wonder
of all your beginnings.
today, begin
again. today,
begin again.”

Published by Zak

an intertidal island in an ocean of impermanence.

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