30 Sep 2015

Late

Ah, I slept in
through the end of the world.
Nothing changed, although
now the sky is greyer than it was before
(or maybe just grey in a new way) and
my neighbours have died
and gotten up again.
I watch them from the dark corners
of my windows. Every day
they're a little more decayed,
desperation hanging in the air
with the stench, unchanging
in the changed world, like me.

I slept through all of it—luckily
it was all I ever dreamt about.
I still dream, recently of a man
and a woman in a field, tilled but empty,
glowing in the hazy evening light, and they stare
at the sun, a sun I can't see.

The silence is hard to describe
     (quiet is precious until you have it in abundance
          (but then so is everything)).
It's worst at night when it becomes
some unheard soundtrack to the uncertainty,
and outside
the wind waits for companion noise.
The shapeless shadows moving just out of sight
let it down.

We clung to habit the most out of everything.
We still work, though the job market
somehow got worse, and now the commute is
a manoeuvre around restless corpses instead of traffic.
I took the only job I could get:
     HUMAN PROP. NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY.
Now I work for a girl who talks to a camera.
Somewhere out there is an audience
that buys the designer clothes I wear
from the official sponsors of Absurdity.
I just stand, shifting
occasionally like the dead
before the cold eye of the camera lens
as she dispenses profitable nonsense.

We're all alive. Can you believe it?
Shaken snow globes look just the same
when everything has settled.
It numbs me in this special way
that frames my mannequin's face.
The girl's inane chatter is a nice change from
the silence,
cruelly pleasant.

I'll never sleep in again.

Pieces

I say because I feel, but if it is
then isn't the feeling alone enough?
I tried saying nothing and realised
that the words were where I put it all.

***

Those memories of warm evenings
in never-were places meander like their
headlights peeking around
pine trees, pitch-black.

***

He's the lad's dad, a guy
who tried parenting from far away.
The results weren't reassuring.
Reason and ego have another wee scuffle.

***

Moving through gardens of thought,
the grass mentions that you were
here—not long ago, I heard,
but it could've been a lifetime.

Another Place

Come on.
    It's okay.
        It's time.

You clawed your way
into the moist, dark earth, almost
a blanket, nearly
a home.
The lesser comfort that's
permanent, you thought,
is sweeter
than the greater one that's not.

You waited
for the next ice age to freeze over
this, the only niche
you could make for yourself.
Years pass—
    a million?
        —until a better creature
comes upon the thaw that
reveals much, but explains little.

        It's time now.
    You'll get used to the cold.
Start again.