February 15, 2010

Last poem of a decade

by Mike Boyle

You don't know anything but production
in the concrete building but sometime
mid-morning, the snow stops. If
you go into the chemical room
a fan goes on with the light.
You can see outside thru
fan blades, oh.

In the last poem of the year,
you're in that room. 55 gallon
drums of solvent, the shit used
to wash ink of rollers. The smell
of it there & following you home
on your clothes. And

what of sublime states while
machine is rolling, there's your
mother 2003. There's your father
in his garden. Do not confront boss
so much in existential disorder, he's
a suffering blob of history too. There's
your ex feeding peanuts to birds last
spring. Let's be friends.

What are you doing, 25 cent
candles burning each corner of room.
Coming out of factory half-dead, scraping
snow from car caw of raven in 3/4 dead
tree. Each conversation an emergency
report. Over there, highway traffic
at a crawl. My father comes out of

the garden, hands me a shovel. It's
spring, 1973. You know what to do
now, he tells me. Shovel now in
basement. Crucifix on keychain I
cannot touch.


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