A poem a day in April from Rutgers English PhD students and friends.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

today I finally clean, and I think,
I think and I clean and I believe
that this is really how we tell time,
by our throwing things out—
not by clocks or beats or lyric
or the sun showering us in day. 

we breathe the same, in, out,
we move the same, to, from;
bleed, blink, speak and listen,
and we think the same, too,
thank the same, drink our love
the same, always the same:

in hope and fear, passion and wear,
in style and humors, look and stare,
in being and dying, image and air;
in moments shared and loneliness,
in hugs and kisses and forgetfulness,
in kind words, gestures and wastefulness. 

I have been reading of the panegyrics,
the praise poems of my people,
those men of courts and courtesy,
and I wonder if I've thrown them out,
along with the beloved and cherished,
or if I'm sifting through metaphorical trash. 

they would always seem to begin in loss,
followed by journeys and perseverance,
and endings in victory, pride, and eternity. 
is my loss become the immortal, then,
if I am not going to turn back time,
or resurrect the dead and restore names?—

I wouldn't throw myself away and believe it
as I saw the dust in the sunlight scattering,
as I rushed over blank pages in pen. 
when suddenly everything was worthy,
and I could give the song birds voice,
or make budding April sing to me. 

I just had to clean things up a little bit, 
filter out the noise and come to it,
the advancing moment ready to bloom 
where my own thoughts scatter, too, wavelike:
leaving me in every direction at war,
making me into my only light, pacified.

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