Friday, February 06, 2009

Circular Breathing Four

Lingering in the uncomfortable
hours before the medicine
sets in, we grow and shrink
like sickened plant life in
the coastal seas, bitter
waves of pain and alternating
stomach upset, ugliness
blooming gray at the corners
of our eyes, parts of us
derelict and rotten, rusted
and unsound even in the
rough seeming of a darkened

And what mirrors are these,
dark, rough sheet metal,
rusted and unsound, these
derelict cheeks of our
unsound machine, battleship
gray in twilight, an ugly
bloom of failed machinery,
upsetting the coastal scene,
a sick stomach, alternating
between bile and medicine,
uncomfortable as we linger
for hours, waiting for some
moment worthy of remembrance.

The terrible memory of those
moments when we felt worthy,
now long gone from waiting for
rebuttal, leaving us without
any hope for comfort, sickness
and clarity alternating, and no
medicine can redress this hellish
shore, all the mechanisms of
our failure colored ugly gray,
and we have become derelicts
upon the highway, unsound
beasts gone rough and feral,
such that we no longer respond to
our own image in the mirror.

Patrick M. Tracy


Anonymous said...

Don't know what to say about this one. I'll have to think on it. M

Anonymous said...


Your back! This is a tough one. Hard hitting – but then the Hawk never let us off easy. We have the physical insult: “sickened plant life … coastal seas … bitter waves … stomach upset … bile … hellish shore” and depression: “ugliness blooming grey … derelict … unsound machine” and finally in the third verse inadequacy: “terrible memory … when we felt worthy … long gone … now … no longer … our own image.”

Although this is unsettling, it is interesting work. This is as far from birds and butterflies and flowers as poetry can be taken. But I’m glad you put it out there.


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