Helpless, hopeless

Helpless, hopeless people,
absent friends—
If you think that because you love her
I must come to love her too,
think that through again
People are inscrutable,
their real sorrows hidden from view

His hands, gnarled now
and slightly tremulous,
are still powerful enough
to crush stone
On paper he seems to hew
with a pen, through marble
to sketch with a chisel

Why this love of charisma and
fine, refined intellectual energy?
She spoke like a princess in exile—
no self-derision, no pity
I close my eyes and see her face
my life both turbulent and dull,
my loves so masterful and awful

We are shadows—
They pay me now not to work
I still have plenty to do but
I no longer wake up so early
What about that maggot politician—
that scurrilous piece of shit,
that dangerous fool

Did anyone hear?
He exalts the abhorrent, the shallow,
acrid and suspicious like a
foul princess who augers disaster
at every sharp corner stop
We experience, think, do and feel
without much understanding

Does she want to care for
helpless, hopeless people?
Partners in greed and
its correlate ignorance,
are like parrots whose tongues
imitate everything they hear—
She purports to love the divine

far more than me
The door, usually locked, was open
as though, anticipating our arrival,
she left it that way before she took a bath
We found grandma helpless in the bathtub
unable to lift herself up
Yes, you can talk to me about it—

I have no secrets from myself
He rarely removed the velvet mask
that served him so well his whole life
I used to think it was a river
of eternity that drove me
Now I know the river’s temporal and
that’s not the same thing

His work placed him beyond
the reach of envy—
We have no access to that fine mental
labyrinth—where he walks there,
what he takes from it and sees
He kept it gritty and spiritual—
never phony, flawless or pretty



-February 3, 2018-