Poem: Villain

Regret is a bastard, that smarts as a reflected

sun in the eyes, grinning wet saliva sucking, like,

glowing in a fold of your brain, singing a memory

through grey matter, you close your eyes tight,

“Eric,” you call silently to the wind, “I’m sorry”

mouthing an apology, and he’s not even here

but it’s the best he’ll get, because there’s a voice

in me that is a question mark, calling shame

as it opens my eyes, “I’m sorry, Scott,” I say aloud

because I really did like you, and I would’ve

hung out more often, really I would, but

the myriad of reasons are pointless,

I could’ve pushed past, it is no excuse

for any callous laughter I may have joined

in or created, I was no hero when I was young.

 

However, in the long view, there were worse

infinitely than I was, I incarnate not just wrath

or a ripping spite, never achieving true big shot

status, which is all that matters in the sandbox,

construction sites and board rooms, quien es mas

macho man, so raise a saber get to death

dealing, cruelty is conflict fungus, growing

within the wines of warriors and refugees

alike, so don’t forget how awful it was, to see simple

justice, because it doesn’t exist in the world

you know, but guidelines exist you’re glad

to know about, like the categorical imperative,

and even with the example, I say my neighbor

had it coming, shouldn’ta been talkin’ shit,

for we all must igloo, humanity seems a torture

storm, grade school is only the beginning.

 

Is a lesson therein, or herein depending

on which of us is talking, is the lesson

of caution, nihilism, or cautious nihilism,

like a life-art suicide, Harold with a backbone

would’ve made for a short movie, though,

also love is real, glowing technocolor

in the trenches, because even camaraderie

makes life seem like living, for worth it

shines behind clouds, drying us all together

on an upward slope, regret burning

paper puppets in the sky, on the page

and the desk in the desert, because it is lonely

business to recount my wrongs, but worth

it, I suppose, if people know that I’ve tried

at least, this I suppose is not nothing.

Poem: Villain

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