Sunday, 14 April 2013

Sunday Poem

Four should be enough of me for me. No, three.
They might not easily apprehend, but they can do,
and doing’s the battle I get them to attend. 
To send them out with grocery lists and day-to-days;
milk, bread, whatever I yen for between bread, they’ll even
plate it carefully so I can keep on teasing out this stuff. 
Parties, several at once, they drink like cops
filling late-month quotas, engage the feckless
literati with The Phaedrus while I seduce their wives. 
That means course enrolment. Tuition. Tough;
I learn to play guitar unburdened during
their job interviews. Finally fangle origami. 
It’s a bit like being God, seeing myself from behind,
askance in the way you can’t but want to. The sum
of our actions define me while they live my lives 
as though committing crimes. Lately we don’t look
each other in the eye. They’re not reading dictionaries
in the off hours. Unfashionably late, on the skive

at the local, making fools of me. Unviable.
Soon and earlier than they think, with such retrograde
expectancy, they’ll drown in the last air left them. 
So it’s a waiting game. Time for a fresh start; tonight
I’ll hit the town and rake the coals they’ve burned. I am
going to wear my favourite shirt, the brown one. Or am I.
From For Display Purposes Only (Coach House, 2013) by David Seymour.

(Painting "Clones, Dick and Tom" by Walter Selenuk.)

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