There are things "in this world" -- I put
"in this world" in quotation marks because
that phrase belongs in quotation marks even more
than all these other phrases, which also
belong in quotation marks; language has been
so overused (or "overused") that even quotation marks
belong in quotation marks; people who wag
two fingers by either ear to stress
each sentence should have silent authenticators
who stand behind them, hands held just outside
the speaker's hands, wagging external
quotation marks. Anyway, there are things in this world
(I say this nakedly) that might go away
if we all just stopped writing and talking about them.
I won't even say what they are, but they are
what everyone is talking about, reading about,
making war on, expressing outrage about,
deploring, defending, explaining, claiming
to understand, claiming no one understands --
Ah -- I deplore deep lore. I am
out of rage. I will head for the hills
and become one of them (am I not old enough?),
At which point I shall be an ex-plain,
a whole grounded nation of ex-planes,
an ex-play-nation (for we used to play, once,
For a while I shall continue to stand under
the sun, which no man understands.
(With global warming, the sun becomes moreover.)
I will collect volumes full of pages bristling
with lucid, well-informed arguments and fill
each page with blankness, blessed blankness.
(Then, I will lie in bed and suck my thumb
through my baby blankness.)
Note: "Baby blankness" as an earlier poem reminisces,
I used to suck my thumb through my baby blanket. "Blanket"
a small blank? Should girls have blankettes?
When I wrote this I think I knew what it was that would go away
if we stopped talking about it, but now I'm not sure of that, probably
because I did (stop talking about it) and it did (go away). However,
what would NOT cease to exist for us if we all thoroughly agreed
it wasn't there? But there are two ways to do that: One is to agree
it's not there while continuing to put it there, in which case it
persists in some unwanted, unknown way. The other is simply to stop
putting it there (for example, resisting it puts it there, as does
hating it, making a mystery of it, sweeping it under the rug, etc.).
Partly I refer to the "events of the day", which are
everywhere, and yet have very little to do with anything anywhere.
Look about you now to see if your walls or floors or front lawn
or trees in the breeze or doorknobs or carpets are worried about
today's headlines. Sometimes the brute negligence of the physical
universe is refreshing.