Thursday, August 23, 2012

My Dad

So it was Paul the postcard you sent me. 
I fall from the window in the early morning of your discussion.
Oliver and those owls recommend staying lonely.
Friends and enemies circulate through the wasteland.
The polite action seldom silences one thing.
Wasn't it enough in the days of the phone booth?

The king's highway finds it way into my notebook.
The cornerstone got lost in my priorities.
I'm making this list to find it again.
Self-talk plays over and over at the mild level of encouragement.
I have given up so many times that by now all the birds
have flown off the wire.
I climb some mountains, but it's only in your paintings.
Your grace catches the impression of a lone lily pad.

He was studying physics in college, took the summer off
to play tennis in order to see things more clearly.
Our relationship deepened when he shared with me that he also
suffered from depression. My dad was eager to find out how I could
cope with the additional blessing of mania.
I reach out to the valuable place that is right now
on the unimproved road.
My dad and I take a bicycle ride on the edges of farmland where
wizened old trees break the wind. We find each other in the geometry
of self portraits, bicycle against open gate.

He creates establishments where one learns to drink deeply
of that lonely feeling between dusk and blackness. 
He is a citizen of the city where one falls into mud and more mud.
There is wine in the soul feeling alienation from landscaping.
Impossible, yes, but it is not impossible to recognize the puddle
that the tavern is near. Perhaps it is only the season,
and drunkenness will soon spill over into my summer days. 
The value of literacy is that we meet other people on the tight rope. 
The limitations of literacy are that we can never sidestep too far
out into that boundless space. 
We do not have the budget to document the conversations
that once threw elegant explanations into the world.

The workspace you find me in is a cabinet.
Earlier, I moved all the dishes onto one shelf.
     I move into a glass and begin to swirl.
You had a premonition I would be here.
My dad can drive any rig, and I can center any lump of clay.
The world is a wax effigy, yet we know it has a center.

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