It’s true I may have lied to you about being stuck here in this bubble,
but I would not have felt the need to lie, if you hadn’t told me you’d be angry–
angry when you heard the congestion in my lungs,
angry when you felt my hacking cough and smelled the bitter coffee
that soaked the many hours I spent looming at the ashtray.
I was writing letters just to tell you I was sorry,
sorry that I was not there that afternoon before judgment day
when we planned to picnic with the family, spend a day out in the park–
and instead I slept in late, having not fallen asleep
until much too far past dark. What business did we have there
when the end itself was near, to watch the fruit falling like bombs?
I stayed in what felt most like the antithesis of the crib,
wrapped in a cold blanket of existential verse, the fabric rough and sweaty,
and still yet, what was worse, you did nothing to express a similar sort of longing,
as I had done in muffled words on the dried-out pulp of pages.
The smiles were all lies. Your fears as contagious. And on that awful
day of judgment, you left me strewn about the pavement.
If I could teach it with a rule, the transgression of the physical in-theorem,
the limitations of the mill that we continue treading on, the minutes ticking by,
I'd say that time itself is merely a function of the telephone companies,
the same ones that helped me place the calls that were eventually placed to you,
the times when I whined about being caught here on this damn museum shelf,
the times when all you could tell me was that I was lying to myself,
feeding the hungry devils that were eating at my health–
so I breathed and coughed. We laughed it off. It stopped my heart
from pumping blood through me in sputters. When we were younger,
I’d play a chord or two after the barbeque, and you’d drifted off in the hammock,
forgetting all the doubt that you consumed 'til you were fat. What, then,
all the while, was the judgment being passed? We have survived. And why?
How can I tell? I cannot help but hear your voice in the back of all my thoughts.
In the ruins of my habits, you whisper in my ear, lies as white as snowflakes,
as dark as highway’s tar, lies that, in some crazy way, determined who we are,
and where we stand now,you and I, here and caught demanding,
why this must be the chosen place where we are no longer standing.