X speaks under her breath; taps on the qwerty click, clickity click click saying, maybe "ith bin, i'm be..." a sigh another sigh from her cube and an aisle away "yahhh, uhh, ul" "ats as first n try, umm" untranslated. low laugh crackle of papers, coughs, suppressed grunts, sub- vocalizations whisper us through the designated seven and one-half hrs.
I’m working again. This time as a quality assurance editor. Trying to think of a way to occasionally and briefly rest my eyes from the constant onslaught of pixelated light rays from my computer screen, I hit upon the idea of writing–in the space of, say, 10 breaths–a small poem. Perhaps several a day. On paper, no less. My gosh, the novelty of it (for me). But I have a dozen or so tiny notebooks, so why not. For example, the one on my lap right now is entitled:
It has a blue speckled (“marbled”) cover and 60 lined sheets, 4 1/2 x 3 1/4 inches. My eyes simply long to rest on something static. Paper will do.
o do let me know if I'm missing something the niceties of email on a Monday afternoon and some blooming bitters ragged under fluorescence sits here, notebook in hand for respite yet bloody o do let me know if I'm missing something dear correspondent I might be wrong could be wrong in the wrong place, wrong time might very well be redundant too but that is my job apparently; I await your response
– written on a scrap of paper
Once again I was caring for my dying mother. She was small, shrunken as one would expect, even in a dream. Someone offered an ideal place in which to die. Large bedroom with picture window, view of a plain, edged by tall spruce trees. Maybe Wyoming or Washington state. A hospice room painted by Hopper. I returned to find her slid down towards the edge of the bed, her body stiffening, but not yet gone. Arranged her in a comfortable position, pulled up a blanket to warm her. Not the right view. Should've been tropical. Mango trees, umbrella ferns, heat, even mosquitos. Surrounded by the talk and the smell of a large family, neighbors too. Movement; cousins, nephews, nieces, family pig grunting in its earthen den under the house. The horse whose name I can't remember had slid into a depression in the soft earth under the fence. We pulled her sweating body back up. She looked around, eyes still wild. The colt and the sire, Lobito, looked too; colt sensing something wrong in the temperature, the arrangement of limbs, the sour scent, a general lack of response, and milk.
From my bookshelf
With all its eyes the creature
sees the open. Our eyes alone are
as if turned back, and placed all around,
like traps, encircling its free escape.
—Rainer Maria Rilke, “The Eighth Elegy,” The Duino Elegies