Monday, June 12, 2017

Whiskey

I need some comfort tonight.  I pour whiskey
over ice, just submerging the frozen blocks.
I take a sip and the novelty burns
slowly down by throat.  I turn the page.
I read, reread my favorite poetry:
Digging, Death of a Naturalist, Follower;
I take a drink.
It burns less as I read Personal Helicon and Antaeus.
A 1966 comfort
against the heavy Irish rain and smell of potato mold.

I turn to Whitman with my next sip:
larger this time with shards of ice sliding down my throat.

"of all the earth her heart most full of sorrow because most full of love."
Last night I cried with no one to kiss away my tears.

I take another sip and flip through
Leaves of Grass until I come to an old,
folded paper; names of former students:
Tatum with Dylan
Alyssa with Eli
Why did I put Joey with Amy?
Why is this memory lost, stuck between
Song of Myself versus 6 and 7?

"What is the grass?"
I take a final sip, smell warm dead grass
handfuls pressed underneath my nose.  I inhale
deeply and close my eyes.  This is my song;
my comfort.  This is myself I sing, interrupting
myself to ponder in silence.

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