Down in the oldest building in town
the ill-fitted librarian wrote
haiku when it was quiet, too
empty for comfort, with a face
of dull grim facility when
looking for ‘le mot juste’
at the end.
His son was young, the kind
of young that sorts all the cars
on the freeway into two only
two colors red and blue –
all of the red heading into his hands
all the blue away away
Always always a father wants
more more of whatever the son
says at so many odd and pregnant
moments he truly wants but
then ignores until the father
reminds him without saying
a word about it.
At home he and his wife
the one who tolerated him and stuck
around long enough to turn
life into a garden and a winery
stayed close without bothering
coming to not worry
about their worries.
His favorite phrase when frantic
was ‘enough of that now’ however
he didn’t know what it meant
really, since nothing could satisfy
his road-bent, fifty-cent hungry
and childishly demanding
When things broke down in LA
after the boy’s band got arrested
the bookish old man quit his job
for a well-deserved long vacation
driving night and day and then
day and night again to
bring him home.
You may not know it but it’s true
there are times more right than others.
On the border between Nevada
and Utah they stopped for the night
he told his son a story and asked
his son a question and presented
him with a gift.
The story was true and not true –
his life in a nutshell – the question
was ‘what are you the very best at?’
The answer should’ve been obvious
The gift given with a nod upward.
was an unprecedentedly full
They drove the rest of the way
home to Colorado or some place
equally open to the future where
the cogitation of the imagination might
plant honeysuckle and drown out
the symphony of howling
Did all of this work? This buzzing
expressing of nothing but possibility
using words like sticks to stick
in holes to get more ants to eat,
like the birds use magnetism to fly
to another continent? We will
have to see, won’t we.