Today's poem is by Zach Savich

Popular Songs About Feeling Bad

That was the year I ended marriages. I don't know why
but many women left their men and swore to me of happiness.
Later that year I heard I have the disease that will either
kill me or not, either very quickly or not. I have to think the two
connected, the way anything empty might become a planter
box. Canoe suspended from a balcony, shellacked
top hat. Desire always asks two questions but sometimes one
sounds like an answer. I pressed into one over the dry
fountain where jugglers assembled, her face in the cut of the
curtain giving onto my balcony. I figured failing at finding
an apartment could mean succeeding at finding yourself at dusk
in a piazza, near a fountain with dogs splashing in it, or a fountain
with marble dogs built around it, or a fountain built around some dogs,
and love might be like that, a thickening emptiness at its center,
failure blossoming like the piazza did at dusk. Enough happened
that year I don't care now if anything does. More and more, life
seems made of listening, and modeling listening to any who might
look to me, then finding no one is. I live alone on a small
coast with little but the education we have in common,
one wrote me. Another, now a nurse, said don't ask if your bleeding
is normal but if it will be fatal. At dusk there are hummingbirds
in the butterfly tree. If I don't feel as much anymore it is
like when a blade silences a piano, not by severing its strings,
just by obstructing the hammers. But sometimes I feel as much as always.

Copyright © 2009 Zach Savich All rights reserved
from Burnside Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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