Litter left by loiterers is history
of a sort untold gum wrappers
empty or not initials scratched into
a bench too often, styrofoam cups
odor and spit and butts.
The world is found in passing
you can tell a diesel truck’s trail
by wake of coughing, eyebrows
riased and the inhuman streaming
downhill into the capillaries.
Scraps and segments in the air
behind a writer or a poet
tells an unlistening audience
something has been almost said
evidence of a lively head.
Lovers hitchhike from edge of town
to center of exploding universe
leaving hints in sighs like smoke
of having taken too seriously
any driver’s tossed-off jokes.
I am sitting at the bus station
I cannot take everything
I have two hours to decide
which valuables to hang onto
and which to leave behind.
All those years in school
the foolishness I inherited
from the childhoods of Dad
and Mom’s Depression parents
my first five or six jobs.
I tear up old journals crumpling
most of my unappreciated cleverness
two marriages, ten guitars
a religion and a half, a career
and my firm belief in skepticism.
I stuff all this stuff loosely
into a plastic bag and tie
the handles in a tight knot
I walk to the opposite end
of the terminal and don’t run around.