If I baptized ghosts
And knew that they were ghosts;
If I consorted with hallucinations
And accepted the pain of false association;
If I planted a Willow
Where it would hang like a cataract of leaves
Occluding gutters and property values,
And nurtured it all the same;
If as Lady Liberty was force-fed dynamite
I lit her fuse with the sparks of resistance—
How would you diagnose me?
I who savor the rush of blood
Of bare feet stomping stained glass,
Who unwinds and unwinds
Like a hangman’s rope ‘round
A star condemned to unrequited love?
You insist that I catch the next train,
Pay my fare, reserve my seat, and
Ride the rails never again.
I’ve forgotten to put my laundry in the dryer.
And what of the bird feeder bereft of seeds,
My appointment with the necromancer,
My deal with the apothecary,
My vacuum cleaner begging for work
Like a Dust Bowl refugee who clings to ragged hope?
If I go and don’t come back,
If I pay and then go broke,
If I memorize the Louvre,
If I wander the Mount of Olives Cemetery,
If I pilgrim the Camino de Santiago
And pray in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela—
Will you give me a clean bill of health?
I hear the laughter of sated robins in my yard
And I promised them a dirty joke about gods and Hawks and desecrated statues.
Written on Wednesday, May 9, 2018