Every old car dies with new parts and every one of us looks in the mirror and sees seventeen then, with our spectacles, a stranger.
There’s time not lost to recollection but simply disappeared into dimensions we forget to dream about.
One looks back from the era and asks Have I done this before?
There it’s Twenty-Seven/Fifteen everything sleek and streamlined as death yet mentally cluttered in ways that make refrigerator doors seem clean.
Now it’s winter again and one worries about spring and having to wake up to another day as a subordinate in someone else’s dream, waiting for life.
It feels like another country, not one I’ve gone to but one where the dogs still bother to mark all the boundaries.
It’s past football season here, still undecided on the number of players, or where to imprison them till fall.
Meanwhile trees have begun to plan leaves, considering all the colors that might work before compromising again to avoid arguments.
In the distance cars go back to work and the planet returns to sighing. A heavy burden of newsprint settles in.
Everything I fear has still not happened, but I know I won’t reach the end of the book or manage to again hear the LPs before the turntable falls into the sun.
Seasonal Affect, Part II
Spring returns with all its obligations, its early sun and ever shrinking night. I can’t tell now when peace will book a stay but I guess we’ll save some money on lights.
While making this morning’s halting run up Taylor, I crested Seventeenth and saw two blocks ahead a white-tailed fawn flitting across Nineteenth. One runs to keep their vices, the other to not be dead.
It was nice to look at winter as a time to finish what I’d left undone last year, It’s nice to do without the sure reminder; I’ll want the same when winters disappear.
And there’s the joke, I guess, of all ambition; not goals achieved, but hopeful repetition.
With this morning already yesterday and the day before but vaguely seen through the lens of the sixteenth century we wander in between strange rooms on stranger missions.
Pug fur on the staircase clouding our ascension to the loft, a hole in the carpet revealing six layers of fractured stains – why would one ever want to clean that off?
Pets reigned like pashas unbothered by books. The mice and the wasps and fans ran free. Drooping cobwebs graced a private history curled in every thought.
M. A. Schaffner lives with spouse and pugs in a house built cheaply 110 years ago in Arlington, Virginia. Their work has recently appeared in The MacGuffin, Illuminations, and the anthology Written in Arlington. Earlier appearances included Poetry Wales, Poetry Ireland, and The Tulane Review. When not avoiding home repairs through poetry, M. A. wades through the archival records of the Second United States Colored Infantry (1863-66) with a view toward compiling a regimental history.