this mean old world has never known the like of me:
i am wearing grooves into its streets and hearts and
living rooms, ten thousand pairs of bun prints left
on couch cushions and theater seats fading quickly,
a thousand thousand fingerprints smudged darkly
onto the looking-glass memories of mumbling minds.
these fade more slowly, if at all, some impressions
lingering as if received by wet cement. certain times
i feel trailing behind me the rippling wake of ribbons,
curlicues of asphalt, turf, classrooms, curricula vitae,
the surface shavings of a chiseled life heaped high on
the twin banks of my passage. how does it appear
from space, this furrowed skein of life and longing?
i want to know only because i am so tired, so worn,
myself the blunted fretsaw blade now humped with
age, shiny still but smooth and unable for much longer
to hold a serviceable edge. it would be nice to know
that God and passing stars and astronauts might even
see the end results and smile, themselves somehow
marked by the facile designs and fancy footworkings
of this ragged bag of bones and brains. that would be nice.


5 thoughts on “pressed

  1. Very nice, Bob. I like the images in this poem a lot. Did you mean to call the designs you create “facile,” though i.e. “easily accomplished or attained?” Perhaps you mean, though, that there are both easily accomplished designs and patterns as well as fancy footworkings?

  2. THANKS, Neil! I was thinking facile as in, “appearing neat and comprehensive only by ignoring the true complexities of an issue; superficial” or maybe “acting or done in a quick, fluent, and easy manner.” Facile probably wasn’t the best word to use there, and I hesitated over it. I wanted some word that would say “despite all the effort that went into this, it was led by a childish impulse and boils down to pridefulness, a certain simple yearning to be seen and to have made an impact.” Got a word for that?

  3. thanks, neil and ange. you know, you’re both people i hope will find more time for writing in the next year or so. i for one would be THRILLED to read your stuff. just a little friendly encouragement. 😉

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