Thursday, May 7, 2009

Day 5

Since, unfortunately, I am extremely busy here at work, I find I am unable to indulge in the usual pretentious banter which tends to preface all of my poetical productions. For that, I apologize. I hope you will understand the seriousness of my situation.

That being said, however, I have managed to write my stanza for the day, and begin another one. I have also made the usual editorial changes to yesterday's efforts, that my constant readers have come to loathe and detest. Just when you thought you knew what I was talking about, I go and change the key terms of the discussion. Well, not really. Nothing so serious as that. The keys are still there. I am just fiddling with the lock.

The nice thing about today is that I think, and I say 'I think' as carefully and as cautiously as I can, that I can hear the deadbolt turning in my skull: the story I want to tell is finally beginning to crystalize in my mind. I think the writing may be a bit easier from here on out. Mixed metaphors and all.

Well, here is today's installment. And if if you are reading this in New York, I hope the rain is not getting you down.

Part I

Paint me a pair of bold anfractuous rocks
Set somewhere in Cyclades—any spot—
Totally removed from Time. No clocks.
I’ll take an afternoon in August, hot
Enough to melt an erlenmeyer flask;
We would emerge from a cool underpass
To catch a guitar weeping, an old song,
In between kids shrieking on the Great Lawn;
So many people with someplace to be
Hurrying to different destinations!
‘Who comes to New York City for vacations?’
I’d ask a poor, pitiable bumble bee
Circling a can of garbage going sour.
Surely, God would not begrudge an hour

Of timelessness unto Humanity—
His representatives on Earth. He must
Have made us and forgotten us. Maybe.
How else would you explain the missing bus,
The leaky awning, and the pouring rain,
And wishing we were elsewhere? Hence, the plane
Landing on a rocky isle in Greece—
Ahead of schedule, in the Cyclades,
Bathed in Hellenic blue. And far below—
Scarcely visible on the white beach—
There is a tiny red umbrella which
Belongs in a pineapple drink; although,
It could be a reflection from the ad
For Traveler’s Insurance™, which is sad-

Ly flirting with me from across the street.
A fault in one of its florescent lights—
Flutter. Flicker. Blackout. And repeat:
Ad infinitum. How I hate these nights!
These buses! Cold rainwater in my shoe!
To say I hate New York would not be true.
We have an odd relationship, I’d say,
We need each other, sort of, in the way
A sad, sadistic cop requires a good,
But slightly stupid, buddy on the force
To buy Budwiesers for him, post divorce,
And hear how he has wrecked his life. This would
Make a fine, redemptive movie script,
Down to the last, cheesy tortilla chip.

For now, a bunch of pink chrysanthemums—
To match the dozen frosted donuts I
Picked up from Dunkin’ for dessert—some
Blocks back, before Zeus unzipped the sky—
Will be added to our table. “How
Much are these flowers,” I ask the fellow
Sweeping up the petals, thorns and leaves
He’s patiently pruning. “Not the roses—these,”
I pointsharply at the mums again.
The chalkboard with the prices on it had
Suffered, like my patience, from the mad
Downpour. Slowly the young Mexican
Lifts five fingers in front of his face—
His exhausted face. What a place

To find such beauty. “Yes, I’ll take those, thanks,”
A note of regret softening my voice…

No comments: