Thursday, February 17, 2011



 susan ambrosino

You need something to write, it needn't be important,
the delusion of meaning is enough.
You wake in the middle of the night feeling hollow.
There's nothing to change your life,
the concrete is poured, dried, set, the basic structure in place.
There's no wrap-around porch, no birds-eye-view from an upper balcony,
no dormer windows tucked in roof top seclusion,
no cool wind from the west pushing out the weight of stale air,
a picture window would have been nice too.
This was not how you intended things to be. Go out to the garage,
get the largest wrench you can hold steady in one hand,
throw it in the works, grinding all to a halt.
Maybe something red and odd will fly out, surprise you
as you pace back and forth, held together by the best plans made with
nails, imaginings, and misgivings.
By the time you're done it's too late, over, kaput,
the bus roaring down the road, dust and exhaust in your face,
the cab picked up someone else…. a sexy woman in a red hat,
the job has been filled….a perky, smart princess sits at the desk
that should be yours near the 45th floor window overlooking Central Park,
the deadline was last month, a winner has already been declared.
You arrive to face a closed door, voices inside laughing,
a shut gate, the plane on its way to the Caribbean,
the marquee lights off, it's the wrong day,
the bakery closed, nothing to serve your guests,
the funeral is over, the coffin lowered in the ground.
But you still remember Silversheene, King of The Sled Dogs,
you read it in fifth grade ignoring the teacher,
book open in the corner of your desk,
reading and glancing out the winter window,
tears streaming down your cheeks,
your first true love was Silversheeen, King of The Sled Dogs,
he broke your heart,
made you come alive in fifth grade,
made you find the words.
The important thing is that the words were there and they were spoken.
Perhaps in disguise as pen and paper, a notebook or a computer screen,
you can leave this world, holding your wound,
slip out unnoticed by a side door, enter the alley,
run along the wall to the back fence,
slip one toe in the chain links,
then the other,
go over the top,
drop down on the other side,
run and never stop,
leaving a trail of words dripping along behind you.
You're trying to understand the weather in your pond
while powers hiding in tall grasses
make plans you can't know anything about.
So you live in the fact of your small world
knowing what you do is of little consequence.
But the words are still there.
The words will always be there.

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