Today I wrote a poem
And it died on the street like a homemade bomb crafted with desperate hands
When I hear homemade I think of lemonade and soft hands in grease touching scalps and scabs making pains go away
The faint smell of cigarettes that should have been discarded long ago
But loneliness forces a pack to stay out of sight but nearby
When did home lives become so desperate?
I asked my poem that died on the street while I was racing to my job that didn’t need me but needed the illusion of me by 8:30am
I asked, “How come more dinosaurs died in Iraq so long ago than here? Or maybe they didn’t and we just used all of our dead dinosaurs up??
My dead poem was lifeless when it was born so it was of no use to me as my noisy car flew past fancy cars fueled in dead dinosaurs
More than mine
I escape guilt
I was reaching out to the dinosaurs because they can’t tell us why they are dead or if they had wars or if their president said that it was bad policy to bring their army home
I wonder if they had a president
Or if they were confident enough to know their own voices would be heard
I don’t write poems often because they are so fragile in this world where things die and become fuel for something else
In essence having a second death
These things, as I rush, make me wonder
Will my father have a second death?
Will he one day become the primary source for some brat to drag race downEast Outer Drive (like we always wanted to do) and crash into trees
What will my father’s second death be a tribute to?
So special he was that my poems that die are of no measure to his love
That doesn’t really exist anymore
Not with homemade bombs and children shooting tanks
He had seen this in Vietnam
And now we see it for him in the Middle East
Where I get confused. Where I try to keep up. Where all the names start to make my head hurt. Where I don’t know who is good and who is bad anymore.
I know that my father didn’t talk about Vietnam. Not the children. Not the food. Not the screams. Not the people who didn’t come back.
He only said, later, when my friend went for her honeymoon, “Why would anyone want to go there?”
And I wanted to wrap my arms around him then
But who wraps their arms around a man who’s grief is strong like steel and bullets and machines
I melt his heart as his daughter
Not as a caretaker
He melts my heart as a father and a man
My dead poem whispers the keys to life as the breath fades from it.
It has given me this vision of my father, immense, wondering freak vegetative contents
Looking for some place to rest forever so that he may give me something in his second death
I just keep circling the street looking for a way to give him something in a life that has now passed with such speed
Cutting my wrists hoping the words that pour out will give us all some resolve
But watching my wrists heal themselves
Because my father wished it so
Protection in death
In my dead poem’s last breath, it whispers a new definition of homemade to me:
There are few homes made