Wednesday, January 05, 2005


Joining in with the gaggle of people responding to Eduardo's challenge to reveal a page from our notebooks, here's one of mine:


His laptop hums like a respirator or like a cat

it purrs as its disc drive spins up

It’s not cancer you worry about

It’s not cancer you worry about, it’s not

the carnation light of your clean

lungs you fear to see go dark in your fist

when the coughing never ends,

as you imagine seated beside someone

who smokes when you do not. No,

it isn’t that at all, you might

welcome the clouds, you might not,

I can’t say because I couldn’t

choose myself, waiting in Chicago

while one of our inland seas

would not let us fly home. Braided rain

smacked the glass, delay

was computed in a tower on computers

that voted for Nixon. Beside

me, a man could not be consoled

by his bored clatter of keystrokes,
the simple games designed

to undo time.

Universality is the divide between rust

and the sinking, soft swing sets

No one ever asks but I try to answer

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