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and to think i saw it on floyd terrace

Tim Martin's Sonnet Project

Thursday, June 26, 2014

home again

            I’ve always wanted
                        the balls
to start a poem like that

     it’s after dinner &
I’m practically forty
     the one night stand last
     was obliging enough
tho, I am sure, bored
at my beige corduroy chair amid tennessee
williams background & notes recounting
how much money my old roommate owes

the crime is neither of us takes the time

to pay respect to the dead
            even on high holy days
too french, you say
to speak of deaths of fire and of stone
            or the ghastly waters
            that hitchhike up our veins
in time for the charcuterie to arrive
            (at forty, I can afford the good cheese)
as we indulge in a planned amnesia
long enough to pass communal stories
in our Sunday best

the best of our outside voices
come to announce our forgetting
of the indiscreet
diaspora of those I care for
we all end up
under the employ
one way or another
and learn to hustle even
in our waking hours
and very edge of our hard
earned beds

this can be a prayer, if you like
the kind of plea for justice,
for past pleasures,
karma to swallow the heart
of the old gossip who stands indignant
on the corner certain
someone has stolen her tomatoes,
for one of the good days,
for Chris, whose father died,
for too many grieving friends to
name like column inches
of newsprint giving honor &
at least memory to our

it is summer again,
I thought we’d just lived through the last one
with the rains in my boots ever present
while my friends choke
back the ash of western

I once was a singer
and after four days rested
seems as though I am stuck
in accidental harmony
a flaw between my ear & throat
not all rhymes have reason

never to hit the true note
I’ve made a career out of the misheard

Bryn Mawr