Poem #25

Hello, counselor (in two voices)…

 

[T]he art of losing’s not too hard to master

though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.

from “One Art”, by Elizabeth Bishop

 
I breathe in. Now, I exhale.
Want to chat?
I try every time, and fail.
 
(I feel like a train wheel grinding against a rail)
Want a conductor’s hat?
I breathe in. Now, I exhale,
 
and try very hard to tell my tale.
(To myself) I was stomped on like a doormat.
I try every time, and fail.
 
He asks, Try, again. Sadly, the thoughts have gone stale.
He directs me, Lay back flat.
I breathe in. Now, I exhale.
 
I feel restrained by beginning to write on the clean, white page.
Our time is up. That is that.
I try every time, and fail.
 
My counseling session has ended for the day.
With a back pat, I go out the door. I remember, now, the relationship to fail.

My brain begins to wail. I breathe in. Now, I exhale.
I try every time, and fail.
 
May 2005

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