Friday, October 09, 2009



A heart is a wish your dream makes so be glad
I tell myself like old cartoons advise,
that I have one, that one out of three ain’t bad
in ponderous games like baseball
or emergency animal medicine. You don’t care
which summer it was, gilded then burning,
and maybe by this point, this juncture
in the blood of it all, maybe I no longer remember
if it really was that season
I say it was. Maybe it was winter
or November, whichever fell first—
I was obsessing in those days
about the mechanics of cruelty,
the engine in which I was always losing
a finger, or something crucial,
an item on which the hopes of everything hung,
heavy and obdurate and impossible to forget.
Except that with time I failed
to remember: miserable, unable to shop
for adequate produce, tangelos which pop
like little suns in your mouth,
like balloons loaded with syrup.
Unable to assess the sky.
Whether the clouds and all the living
which are in them somehow,
whether these things know
their purpose and if they feel like sharing,
opening up at last, inducting the rest of us
into the details of the joke.
The password, the secret handshake,
the confirmation that yes,
all that pain added up to something
more than the fudged sums of so many fragments,
though my word isn’t one
you should trust, you should trust me on that.


Anonymous said...

Thanks, Paul, for posting this. Would you consider the word affirmation, instead of confirmation? Just a thought.

Hope you're well! Peter G.

Suzanne said...

SO good to read you!

Keith said...

I think you need to write more, Mr. Guest.

Paul said...

Working on it!

Thanks, y'all...

Talia said...

Mr. Guest, I just want to say that I just read your "Index of Slightly Horrifying Knowledge" and was really blown away as I rarely am by contemporary poetry, and considering that I really desperately and bowels-up want to be a poet it was really gratifying and excellent to feel this way about a contemporary poetry collection... my favorite poem in the book is "My Life Among" because I often feel I have blundered into a 'Russia of the mind,' and you captured the disconcerting experience of having just half-forgotten a dream perfectly. Thanks for inspiring me.

-Talia Lavin

Joelle Biele said...

Thanks for posting this wonderful poem--

* said...

Just beautiful--it's good to hear your voice again.

Ruth Ann