To Keep Meaning From Emerging From The Mesh
We meet like shoelaces
Knotted by a need that likes to act nonchalant
Staring its object straight in the threat I mean face…
Work and play, too, become
Another dualism abstracted from a unified sum
Like digging beneath the tulip
To find its roots in rain…
Work’s like sunglasses
Somebody punched a lens out of:
We see both ways simultaneously.
The parallel lines my double vision saw
Have finally met in a blur…
Some day’s work’s hell
But I’d have to deal with people anyway
The way desire dogs me around
And meaning’s some scummy moralist, witty alien,
Poking his head out from the marriage bed
Charming us to keep our mind off his dissection.
Living, or dying?
Just ‘cause we know the sand’s
Being poured down the drain
Doesn’t mean it doesn’t feel immense,
And cannot, like running, be run away from.
So whether or not you get the job
Has much to do with romance
And whether or not you get to seduce
Depends on whether a job’s the excuse.
New American Writing, 1990; republished in Oops (Pavement Saw Press, 1994)