Welcome. Stay at your own risk.
I have seen the black sheets laid out like carpets
under the trees, catching the rain
of olives as they fell. Also the cerulean brightness
of the one covering the bad roof
of a neighbor’s shed, the color the only color
inside the winter’s weeks. Another one
took the shape of the pile of bricks underneath.
Another flew off the back of a truck,
black as a piano if a piano could rise into the air.
I have seen the ones under bridges,
the forms they make of sleep. I could go on
this way until the end of the page, even though
what I have in my mind isn’t the thing
itself, but the category of belief that sees the thing
as a shelter for what is beneath it.
There is no shelter. You cannot put a tarp over
a wave. You cannot put a tarp
over a war. You cannot put a tarp over the broken
oil well miles under the ocean.
There is no tarp for that raging figure in the mind
that sits in a corner and shreds receipts
and newspapers. There is no tarp for dread,
whose only recourse is language
so approximate it hardly means what it means:
He is not here. She is sick. She cannot remember
her name. He is old. He is ashamed.
“It’s easy to make choices when you have things hampering you - a job, kids’ schools - but when all you have to go on is your own desires, then life becomes considerably more difficult, not to say intolerable.”
“Because, okay, the thing was - he saw it now, was starting to see it - if some guy, at the end, fell apart, and said or did bad things, or had to be helped, helped to quite a considerable extent? So what? What of it? Why should he not do or say weird things or look strange or disgusting? Why should the shit not run down his legs? Why should those he loved not lift and bend and feed and wipe him, when he would gladly do the same for them? He’d been afraid to be lessened by the lifting and bending and feeding and wiping, and was still afraid of that, and yet, at the same time, now saw that, there could still be many - many drops of goodness, is how it came to him - many drops of happy - of good fellowship - ahead, and those drops of fellowship were not - had never been - his to withhold.”
“In the pond he was all animal-thought, no words, no self, blind panic. He resolved to really try. He grabbed for the edge. The edge broke away. Down he went. He hit mud and pushed up. He grabbed for the edge. The edge broke away. Down he went. It seemed like it should be easy, getting out. But he just couldn’t do it. It was like at the carnival. It should be easy to knock three sawdust dogs off a ledge. And it was easy. It just wasn’t easy with the amounts of balls they gave you.”
“Based on my experience of life, which I have not exactly hit out of the park, I tend to agree with that thing about, If it’s not broke, don’t fix it. And would go even further, to: Even if it is broke, leave it alone, you’ll probably make it worse.”