Packing Up Blues

Pay all your bills, disable the router,
Shut down the software on your laptop computer,
Draw all the curtains and shut off the lights
And wait for the first of the silent nights.

Toss out the flow’rs; they were already dead,
Let the mole-snakes return to inhabit your shed.
Pack up your mother’s furniture, out of the sun,
Let the postbox be gorged with letters to no one.

This was my heart, my hell, my pain, my rest,
For too long, for far too long, my nest,
For years I tossed in my childhood sheets;
While dreams drifted slowly away, in silent fleets

Throw out the milk, set free the birds,
Give somebody else your windowsill herbs,
Dismantle your easel, pack up your sails,
Unsubscribe from ten years of promotional mail.

My flower stems are dying now; throw out every one,
Fold up the mountains and snuff out the sun,
Cash in the coupons and turn out the yard,
Recycle your childhood birthday cards.
Swallow your pills and hang up your clothes,
For nothing now resembles the life that you chose.


[Inspired by the form and meter of W.H. Auden’s Funeral Blues]

your boredom is as real as mine

Boredom is fragrant, like incense
It fills the house with its sweet, sluggish smell.
No wonder we get drunk on it.

Your boredom is as real as mine.
It is tumescent; it grows in size until it smothers you.
But still wants more.

Your boredom is near-numberless alternatives,
an abundance of choice with no room for decision.
In this serene paralysis of your thick, thick boredom
You, like me, wade through its stifling tide.

Proximity, immediacy and availability : these are the springs of your boredom
They make
and luxury.

I think that our world requires boredom
To sustain the craving
To justify the feast
To keep you and I hungry.