Monday, May 23, 2011

Beautiful Like Grant Goodeve

Beautiful Like Grant Goodeve

Where do I think I’m going
speeding down this road?
The red light will always stop me,
don’t I know that?

The color of things:
this morning I had my cereal
in a tangerine bowl.
The sound of things:
this morning I heard a
distant boom, a faraway
explosion.

These are things that don’t matter.
But every day, I find again
the good things, the nice things,
the reasons to stay.
Today it is the drone of a
sitar, harmonium; the
smell of cooking garlic;
the taste of fresh mango.

Maybe my life would’ve been
better if I’d grown up to be
beautiful in the 70s, like
Grant Goodeve, Gregory Harrison
or Leigh J. McCloskey.
Possibilities missed by seconds.
Missed paths on the left when
I was looking to the right.
All the men I wasn’t.
All the men I’m still not.

Yet this all feels so familiar.
I have sat here before, on a calm sunny morning,
seeing colors of trees, blue skies,
breathing in fresh air from a partly open window,
knowing that there is disappointment on the way,
on the telephone or in the mail that will arrive in an hour.
I don’t even know what the question was but
the answer will be “no.”

I think I will grow a beard for winter
and become the man I am,
the one who knows many things,
the man who knows that there is
an enormous invisible scale
and it all gets measured
whether we want it or not,
whether we like it or not;
that today, on this spot, it is
measuring clear air and silence,
for now.

©JEF 2008-2011

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