There are places in this world bent
by terrible doubt and the disturbing
feeling that if you let your guard down
for one second the whole thing will
collapse around you, leaving you
dumbfounded in the ruins of your lifestyle.
Your family will disown you for your stupidity,
the bill collectors will scurry off with your couch,
your love will have been lying to you all along-
see, here is her secret affair with a man who
looks like a model and scampers about
in a Bentley from his eight-car garage.
It might not be places in this world,
it might just be times in this world
where the mind itself bends and you see
yourself peering at what’s in front of you
with a tilted head, unable to make sense
of this terribly emotional condition, the
underlying currents that only some people feel,
and you are one of the lucky ones.
You feel it, it’s between your toes, it slides
up and down your spine and fucks with
your chakras, which at this point aren’t
glowing like they should.
Life is rich and frightening and you really
shouldn’t spend so much of it trying to
explain it in words, you should know by now
that in the end that small feeling of
personal accomplishment will be overshadowed
and eventually overthrown by a shapeless
sense of dread and futility. You should try reading
Hesse again and crying in the shaded corner,
or maybe batter yourself over the heart with Kafka.
Better yet, do both and cry, nobody will feel sorry for you.
(this poem appears in Haggard & Halloo)