the words escape me

January 16, 2013 § Leave a comment

the words escape me

this is what they do
when I am lost in a commercial
for a product guaranteed
to rid my lungs
of that damned incorrigible mucus
“look how much the cartoon
mucus guy looks like Uncle Floyd”

this is what I say to myself
as the words are filing
through the bars of
their gray cells

I whistle a bit of Carmen
and trace the contours of
ceramic animal life
in the layered dust of their
book shelf abode
as the words
are creeping along an outer wall
hidden by tall grass and
hoping for a fault in the stonework

later, I will look for them
but by then
they will have long ago
shimmied up a tree by the
edge of the enclosure
and have made that great
leap for freedom

still, I will go on
a lantern held before me,
a pencil behind an ear
a notebook in the back
pocket of my jeans
knowing that
of course they are gone

leaving me with no way
to colorfully describe
my neighbors garden,
the shopkeepers lack
of social skills
or, seemingly,
my collapsing universe

(c) 2013 Fred Whitehead

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