Today's poem is by Dean Young

The Euphoria of Peoria

Help me please breathe,
help me please achieve other perches,
into night daylight lurches
a somehow-me with other capacities a-flutter
so we can maybe be kind to each other: bird
or ferret or rhinoceros,
There's so many critters in us,
it's okay our zooish outbursts,
spats about who's most screwed-over first, who started
the fire, who cleans up, who should have better guarded
the onion patch, it's after midnight still no
supper, all kitty-wumpus giddy-thump out-of-kilter,
this coffee made with a ripped filter, so
how did an attack dog get to be my cat?
Can't someone send me a letter to tell me where I'm at?
Can't we fast-forward to the slow part,
less matter, more art,
almost no content please, just the nearly blank heart,
the musicians closing their bumpy cases,
the fatigued look of relief on post-coital faces,
the impossible symphony unblundered through their bodies,
a few stragglers offer thanks in the lobby
but they know it wasn't their choosing,
the beauty and terror was hardly their doing,
like all of us they get up in the afternoon each morning
with few clues about what needs doing,
shampoo the furniture? paint the ceiling?
endorse the divorce? deal with these zig-zag feelings?
the air below us, the roots above,
why not fall in love with a chimera,
cross-examine the Oh no! with an Ah ha!
take a hotel shower, get unprepared for the hour
you were warned of and promised,
shockingly you will be kissed, haunted, you can practice
your big speech until you're ready you think
but then be unable to swallow
because full of laughter, sorrow, quivering and hollow
as a bell must be to ring.

Copyright © 2009 Dean Young All rights reserved
from Crazyhorse
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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