Nothing but fragments!  Nothing. 
A chunk of this.  A scrap of that. 
And always having the wrong tools.

Wondering why.

It’s a mouthful of nails.
It’s the needle’s eye.
It’s that same dumb crowd
standing out there gaping
while you try to drive the spike
through your other hand.

It’s a secondrate job and they know it —
our friends, the immovable critics.

Of course it didn’t work.
It never does.
The surgery.  The spinal taps. 
The chemotherapy.  That final
gut‑wrenching struggle to stay alive. 
Reduced to a few feeble gestures.

It can’t be enough.

But my mind is an open grave
at the edge of a steep ravine
where the curved land falls away
in a tangle of roots and branches,
and my pen is a strange kind of shovel. 
I throw all of my weight behind it. 
I lift all I can bear
and hold it here . . . above you.

Then I let it fall.
You taught me how.
I let go now.

 

Hear it:

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