Monday, September 6, 2010

a museum of american fathers

Kids in strollers will soon come up in the world.
Will soon carry cell phones to desk jobs and strange jobs,
and if the economy doesn't improve, perhaps no jobs at all.
The mothers in track suits will get older,
flabbier, crankier, too. Some will fawn over grandkids
and some still have some fondling
to do, perhaps.

This city will stay wet.
(From where I sit it doesn't matter,
under a coffee house roof,
well into my second cup.)
I'll come up in the world, too,
maybe in order to write better poems,
maybe to shatter and write no poems at all,
but I hope not. I just hope my only hope
isn't a desk job, a gather-around-the-cooler-job,
a ball-and-chain-yelping-through-the-day-job,
or any other Germanism you can think of.

Maybe I'll have a kid in a stroller
to bring up in the world, and maybe I'll name
him Dave or Bill or some damn American thing;
maybe I'll exhibit less and less control over him
until he practically doesn't know me or me know him,
until I've watched him leave my home
the one last time I could've embraced him
spoke to him with any kind of wisdom.
I'll lean on the porch-post and cough a smoker's cough
and light another and cough again.
My body'll shake an old man shake,
thin and grown more alone,
then shake no more.

Maybe I'll belong in a museum of American fathers;
a hall of fame of those who held-fast the remote.


  1. You know that you're going to name your kid some damn american name, to do otherwise would go against everything you stand for.

    Also.... this poem is fucking brilliant.

  2. Thanks, Tyson. And yeah, I probably will.