Thursday, March 18, 2010

i don't think up comebacks anymore

i guess
it was a somewhat endearing moment
like its new
the laughing chorus
you can clock me at 
2-3 per week
times 52 reps a year
times 25 year career
professionally speaking
it adds up
but in some ways
it's always my first

on the elevator with my father 
they wait
the Goonies with juice-stained lips
and shorts their mother laid out for them
that morning
with chocolate milk and race car 
tough guy dreams
still crying 
over skinned knees
tattooed with bruises and

like i remember my knees
with the curve in my back
turned toward them
they are two
the lift stops at 2 
and another
as more
file in
the box on pulley answering
to buttons
smeared with sticky soccer hands

i can't hear my father over
freckles and front teeth 
still coming in 
big and white
entitled front row spot
in smile
or cackle
or sneers
from the company of ascot's little men afraid of what goes bump in the night
where their bell tower popcorn 
etches my hump, in spite of the fact
that i don't always have my cloak of night shadow
from these
not yet successful covert
operators still learning 
to tie tight their 
sneakers, snickers
behind me
telling me to answer my father louder
or ask a question
about the weather
or jesus
or his band
or his beard
greying hopefully
enough to muffle what he might not have observed 
on this elevator

doors open
stepping onto carpeted room with my father
and a trailed off conversation
encasing the several i've had 
with children who squealed audibly scattered 
adults who watch reality
t.v. telling
snot wiping sleeves to 'watch your mouth' and 'mind
your manners'
but the only one i trust
is slow step
slow step
hunched over
walker click 
shifting hip
in front of me 
who saves his foul mouth
for the bedroom
like me

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