“We could work it out.”

incalculable loss frozen
across my heart.
music silenced.
new paths open,

Again with the poems that come together with no help from me. And again with the poem that falls apart midway through. (And again with me collapsing in sleep before finishing. Feh.)

I’m determined to keep at this Zeno business,* but I’m really beginning to think I won’t crack this code. I’m sorry for that, but all it’s not lost. I’ve noticed that I have much less aversion to the rhyming, something that was a real problem for me with both the Rhyme Royales two years ago and the Nove Otto last year. That’s an interesting shift. And, too, I’m not feeling put out by the rhythm of the 4/2/1 lines these last few days. So, I’m not in love with the poems, but I’m appreciating the changes.


(Had I not fallen asleep Tuesday night, this story would have been my SOL for the week …)

Coming up from the A train into Penn Station Tuesday night,** I passed a guy sitting on the steps. He mumbled at me, and I — because I just can’t ever seem to help myself — paused to talk to him.

“I can’t understand anything you’re saying.”
He nods, looks at his beer then back at me.  “I say I can’t stop the world from turning.”
“No  no I don’t guess you can.”
“Today’s my birthday.”
“Then happy birthday.” (And I started walking again. He wasn’t in distress. Just drunk.)
“I’m from Brooklyn … Flatbush … You single? … Don’t laugh … We could work it out.”

Um, yeah. I’ll just bet we could. Oh, the opportunities I’ve let slip through my fingers!

* A Zeno poem has ten lines with this pattern: syllables = a/b/c/d/e/f/d/g/h/d, rhyme = 8/4/2/1/4/2/1/4/2/1.

** Yes, to mail my taxes at the last possible minute even though I did them back in February. What? You didn’t know I was queen of procrastination?

8 thoughts on ““We could work it out.”

  1. Your Zeno poem is lovely. There’s a sense of isolation and hope in the write.

    I cannot believe you were not swooned off your feel by that knight-in-rusty-armor! You’re just heartless! Heartless I tell you! ;).


  2. molly

    My favorite approach, from a guy who occupies a certain street corner, and always holds out a hand saying “I’m hungry”, was this:
    “I’m hungry.” (pause, no response) “I like you” (pause, no response) “I love you!”
    My thought was, this is a summary of many relationships.


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