Monday, June 8, 2015

poem of the day 06.08.15

captain america strikes again

the last time grigory and i met
he put down his broom
and interrogated me about my life

then we had a serious conversation
about the direction of america

grigory said he didn’t like the kids
carrying all of these phones or tattoos on women

he said that people in america
are a lot dumber than they were
when he came here from russia thirty-five years ago

grigory said, why do you think this is?

i shrugged, i told him that it’s taken me
over forty years to know what i know about america
and most of it i don’t like

so i blamed cell phones and the internet too
and we sat there like two old philosophers

yesterday i saw grigory again
for the first time in months

he was pushing a mop through another hallway
that would be dirty again within an hour

he didn’t remember me or our conversation

usually when this happens
it gives me a small satisfaction
that i’m at least doing something right

but grigory stopped mopping long enough
to see what i had on my computer screen

it was a comic book web site

he said, how old are you? forty?
and you play games, yes?

let me guess, you don’t have children
yet you read kiddie books?

i really didn’t know what to say to this

i thought maybe i’d go into oligarchs and plutocrats
reality stars changing into women
corporations and candidates and all of the endless wars

something to jog grigory’s memory
of our time together as great western thinkers

but i had nothing

i had another bad actor dressed as batman on the screen
and captain america running through a field of fire

in movies expensive enough to end homelessness
feed children and fix the national debt

i said, grigory, it can’t be proust all of the time
then i laughed my biggest fourth of july sale laugh

as grigory shook his head at me and walked away
so disgusted that he left the mop.


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