Every time I sit there

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every time I sit there, smoking,

I have some thoughts,

rambling and pastel,

merging with the weed flower

the crows in the sky,

and the dull rooftops.

I’m ashamed, you know,

seeing those cigarette butts

decomposing

with the dead copper autumn leaves.

what would I say to sanity, for instance,

or to my old green veins which

seem to get along well with the

purple yarn of my cardigan?

it’s still cold, you see,

and having a cup of earl grey

is as plastic and drunk

as the questions in my head.

no promises can be made here

but songs can be rewritten and sung.

I hate the smell of the smoke on my body

it always makes me feel, well, dirty

but it can stay there for a while

and when I speak, it’s in the same tone

and pace, the same amount of ellipses,

borrowed joy and learned pride, too

so it might as well be nothing.

I meet the water color version of you

in every coordinate of the cloudless sky

and the breeze, hatefully or playfully

(I can never tell, but it doesn’t matter),

blows the smoke back onto

my freezing cheeks and fingertips.

“what halts you now?” says the weed to Spring,

“the squirrels are nowhere to be seen.

is it the emptiness, again?”

the crows cry way up there,

the wind stops grazing,

I put off the last flickers, and,

for a moment, all that pulse

stop pulsing. haze.

“Save me some of it; this

madness should end somehow.”

and it does end,

every time I sit there,

smoking.

2006

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