Monday, September 25, 2023


For a short, blissful while 
in our lives, 
we are able 

to rely upon 
a limitless supply
of inspiration; 

from our bountiful 
dreams, we pluck
copious reminders 

that one plus one 
is not always 

and that fair and fowl 
sometimes don't 
cancel out each other. 

But sooner or later, 
the hard times 
must hit, 

and we're ordered 
to ration and restrict 
away the abstract. 

Little by little, 
our belts 
grow tighter, 

our skins, red 
and thinner, 
and our vision, 

dimmed and tired—
until, at last, 
all we're left with 

is the discourse
of arithmetic—
an accounting 

of our worth 
using dry, 
brittle sticks. 

Only now, 
stick plus stick 
seems to always yield 

two sticks
whereas back 
when we could dream,

stick plus stick 
might mean