Written Carefully on a Brown Paper Bag


Moody weather mirrors elastic emotions. Forest green

sweater covers coursing red impulses. (she sings while

she works. The older women bicker endlessly about

the arrangement of paintings).

“Too many horizontals in this area.”

I agree. Let’s get vertical.

“Wring out our spines like wet rags,” said an actor playing an impersonation of Burroughs.

We’ve done the damage. Stood up straight sometimes.

You mysterious coward. Great posture. Strong delivery.

Perfect marks on these transcripts

Let’s be parallel.


Did my heart drop when I learned that I failed

to leave behind a legacy? It was expected.

This world, full of vague impressions, forgetful days,

hazy horizons, contorted faces in the sunlight,

shrinking nature, growing clouds of floating filth…

grinds on, indifferent. You must yell

into the face of the world.

Force those vague, forgetful faces,

contorted with memory and pain, to listen

and to listen well.

Maybe all you’ll ever leave behind is a vague impression. What a bummer.

“How are you holding out?”

Just fine.