Thursday, October 1, 2020


Learning how to live while waiting to die,
Is learning how to live like you’re really
Just waiting to die, only way to live.

It’s not just other people drive you mad.
True, social obligations are the worst—
Somehow, you find yourself a parasite

Upon the very same society
That parasitizes you. Mutual
Persistence through mutual destruction,

The gravest Escherian cul-de-sac
Ever knotted by selection’s knitting.
Humans spawned our own domestication

Which eats us now we can’t live without it.
But there are other anxieties, too.
Was that scream this morning a coyote

Breakfasting on your predatory cat
That made a cat’s breakfast of so many
Unfortunate rodents, lizards, and wrens?

Is that raspy whispering from your car
History about to repeat itself?
Could this wind be about to knock you flat?

The fine black thread that stitches these as one
Armillary Sphere tapestry of dread
Hisses its own name each time you tug it—

Do. Oh, do something, do. Surely you could,
You must. Just try to do something. You know
Something is wrong, could be soon. What to do?

Drive around in the dark, hoping to spot
A shadow of living cat. Post posters.
Crawl under you car and study the mess,

Makes no sense? Take it to a mechanic.
Get back in the house before the storm comes.
Answer the phone. Batten down the hatches.

Make another list and cross life from it.
Do it. Do this. Do, do, do lisps a hiss.
The gods are in the details of that list.

Or don’t. Don’t try not to. Ah, passivist.
No, of course you’re not just waiting to die,
But won’t you die doing things? Let some slide.

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