A belated birthday poem

I have been writing one poem all my life
I work on it at home, alone, at night, in the
corners of the afternoon. And the
language of this poem, this un-
readable poem, is often hard and
precise as machine bolts,
except when it's not.
And then
it sprawls slack-kneed, or sprints,
fresh from the bath like a naked child
running from her mother.
And this poem, with no meter or
discipline, held together
by just the voice that speaks it,
is leant meaning only in moments when
meaning sticks. Sometimes it rhymes,
and sometimes it does not. But
this poem, this embarrassment,
this scandal,
seems to have always been. It has no real beginning,
but I know how it ends.


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