Monday, October 29, 2018

The Bevmo Lady Has Gone Insane and I am Out of Wine. by William Taylor Jr

Your good intentions for the afternoon
are machines full of unanswered calls,

boxes of unfinished letters forgotten
in the garage or given away.

And the poems, they don't want to be born,
they don't want the trouble of being dragged
into the world anymore than you or I;

they're fine as they are, left alone as the mist
on the fur of the lost dogs asleep in the alley,

unborn in the eyes of the skinny girl in the Greyhound
station clutching a one way ticket to some town
with a name you've never heard.

I go to the Bevmo for wine
and there's an older lady at the counter.

I say older, but she's younger than me.
I put my stuff on the counter and ask how she is.

Crazy, she says.

Okay, I say, and laugh a bit.

I put my card in the thing
and she asks if I want a bag
and I say, sure.

I really think I'm losing my mind,

she says to no one in particular
as I step away.

Outside everyone is standing in lines
in front of buildings as if it were
what they were born to do.

The streets are full of people,
animals and objects
I lack the power to save.

Some days the loneliness of things
is the only sun shining,

the only restaurant open,
the only one who shows to the party.

Some days the loneliness of things
is the only song on the jukebox of eternity

and you either have to dance or go home.

William Taylor Jr. lives and writes in the Tenderloin neighborhood of San Francisco.  He is the author of numerous books of poetry, and a volume of fiction. He is a Pushcart Prize nominee and was a recipient of the 2013 Kathy Acker Award. He edited Cockymoon: Selected Poems of Jack Micheline, published by Zeitgeist Press in 2017. From the Essential Handbook on Making it to the Next Whatever is his latest collection of poetry.


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