Monday, March 15, 2021

Heavy Rotations

~ 86 Billion Neurons and 0.2 Quadrillion Connections

Have you ever done something
When you were alone and said

In your head, This is truly
And trivially stupid,

But I’m going to do it, and
No one will know, except me

And the voices in my head?
Rhetorical question, yes.

Whatever it was you did,
However unimportant,

Foolish, insignificant,
And mildly embarrassing

Had you known someone saw you
(Who knows, maybe someone did),

That was the real you, the real
Human, the vast brain working,

In defiance of its own
Parasitic choruses

Of culture personified,
Mind made up to make its own

Bed in the dark of the world,
Stand commonsense on its head.

~ Sometimes I Tumble

Life is good at surprise, bad at suspense,
At least in those terms Alfred Hitchcock meant.

It’s not anyone lives absent of dread—
It’s just that we get different shocks instead.

Imagine a long, boring poker game.
Now picture the timed bomb that Hitchcock’s placed

Under the table beforehand. Suspense.
Storytelling. You begin to feel tense.

You lean forward a little in your chair.
One player checks his watch. Another swears.

The watch stops. Since when have you worn a watch?
What are you watching? Where’d you get that watch?

Where’d those poker players across the street
Get to? Wasn’t there at bomb at their feet?

Late winter sun yawns across the light-blue
Emptiness crawling with clouds. You fall through.

~ Ouray and Alpine and Slocan

And all of the things that were
In the two decades after
The escape that never was—

Life imitates housekeeping.
Enjoying the evening,
As she did, could it have been

Too, that I could have remained
Transient here and not have
Had to leave? I collected

Maps and pictures of places
Lonelier and quieter,
Quieter and lonelier,

More and more out of the way
Than anywhere I could stay,
Towns in the floors of drowned lakes.

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