Processing

I start playing Elevate,

specifically the “Processing” game,

where words fall ever faster from the sky

and you try to train your brain to keep up.

Across from me, a man,

doubled over, opens his hand.

Pills of every color lie nestled within.

As if in a stupor, he nudges them,

gently, with his forefinger.

Then, with slow and deliberate movements,

he picks up a fallen white capsule.

Placing it amongst its brethren,

he tightens his fist around the pills once more,

bringing them close to his chest.

His head sags down,

mouth half-agape.

Suddenly, the train bursts

into afternoon sunlight

as we cross a bridge,

the Charles sparkling below.

I look at my hand,

my phone still reads

“Processing.”

Sea

Don’t take me for a nice guy.

Don’t take me for an asshole.

Just… don’t take me.

To understand me you have to

see I am at sea.

Not a sailor or a captain,

not even a cook or a boatswain;

just a stowaway.

I lost my way and ended up here,

near the edge of the world,

hurled into a vast nothingness,

an empty expanse.

So with expansive words and gestures

I will attempt articulate that which festers me:

Because you see, I am not actually at sea.

This vessel is not within water…

…but has water within.

Encased in skin and sinew,

bone and muscle bustling to and fro,

I watch as I ebb and flow.

How can I be lost within myself?

Myself, a floating vessel of organs and cells,

excels at what it was designed to do.

We few survivors of evolution are designed merely for procreation.

The continuation of our lineages.

As if our only value lies with our heritage.

Thus, I am not worthy in and of myself but am instead a genetic repository.

I am transitory to my immortal genes.

I can see this while at sea,

My somehow submerged bouyancy allowing clarity.

It is almost freeing knowing your purpose is external to yourself.

That leaves the rest for the all-encompassing Self.

But I am lost in it- my rivers of coursing perceptions disregard the finer details like orientation to any surface.

Instead, a Charybdis discourse between sub-conscious selves.

I imagine them as little elves, delving into memories, gleefully shining the few they enjoy, toying with them, and then casually destroying me with them.

See this bauble?  See this sheen?  Watch it gleam as it sinks into the depths.

Watch it, and ponder your depth.

Ponder your death.

Because it is insignificant.

Significance lies in the passage of genes, remember?

Remember that one December?

Frost biting the air as you stroked her hair back from her cheek,

seeking a warmth not measured in degrees,

seizing you with a serpentine grip,

squeezing you so hard you forget to find your breath and you’re underwater,

watching as the gleaming pair of you drift into your depths.

So much has been lost down there.

Or up there.

Somewhere.

In the sea that is me there is no direction.

Only omnipresent reflection,

mirrors on mirrors stretching into infinity

such that you cannot discern reality

from the playful facsimiles.

Simply float on.  And on.

Shhh….

It is silent here.

Not out of fear.

It is merely the nature of this place.

Placed so quietly in obscurity.

That is, Me.

Subway observations

“DEUCE WAS HERE”

Black marker attempting permanence.

Scattered newspapers

scuffled underfoot

dried slush proclaiming

40% OFF! 

discounts meet boot heels.

Glance up:

grey flats, white laces trying to shine

omnipresent grime

this Boston winter grits

the Orange line into shades of salt rime.

Those grey pants are too tight

for this thirty-something texter.

Shit.

Eye-contact.

Time to contemplate the empty

Arizona bottle skittishly questioning toes.

1) Who gets ‘zona’s in plastic bottles?

2) Why is the cap off?

Did you purposefully drop TWO pieces of trash

just so you could be twice the asshole?

or maybe

it’s MODERN ART

hidden among the dinginess

of tired commuters

-Tufts stop-

-man absently kicks 40% OFF

does not register the deal he’s smudging-

[sic]

TIME TO CEASE

RAMBLING

SILENCE

FINGERS

CEASE

YOUR

GRAPHITE

ASSAULT

ON THESE

UNSULLIED

PAGES

-got off train at Downtown Crossing-