Thoughts from the Underground

Sometimes it is that
nothing I own works
as if the tight throat
lodging in the path of my breathing
has conspired against me
to unleash suffering
over all my endeavors.

In these sorts of times
my breathing can’t reach
and my arms become frail
and I feel like I’m swallowing
but silently and without use.

Sometimes this feeling
of unrelenting pointlessness
and deeply indebted ineptitude
lassos my soul and shivers it
right into submission
without my consent.

These sorts of times
seem to happen at the worst
sorts of times.
The sorts of times where I need
my breath the most
to do things that I know
no one else can,
let alone me.

In my frailness
I let salt water tides
flush down my face
and I’m told to stop pretending
like I can swim.

And sometimes when that happens
and I forget that anyone can see me
and I forget to expect anything to work
and I forget that there is expectation
at all;
I forget to keep myself
in this cage of conjecture.

I forget to take myself so seriously
I forget to wear anything
but my favorite sweater
which I have happened to wear
for the past three days.

I forget that it all matters
That any of this matters
and in that way
the meaninglessness of it all
flushes out of my soul
with the salt water.

In the absence of this meaninglessness
I find
not what I expected to find
but that
I can breathe again.

So I make a cup of tea
and I add a drop of honey
and I stir it with a wooden spoon
and I go and look at Dali.


The reader brings his or her own experience to the poem and creates meaning. Here is my experience.

2 thoughts on “Thoughts from the Underground

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About Josie

I run slowly through forests, eat spoonfuls of Jif's Natural creamy peanut butter, and perpetually wear a fuzzy Patagonia sweater I found for $1.50 at a charity shop in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I deal in trees, breeze, and threes. I'm not interested in being normal. I'm not looking to pass GO. I'm not looking for anything other than breathable freedom.