Bio Note: I live in Lawrenceville, Georgia, and work as a tech writer, a job I’ve had off and on for over 30 years. So much for my day job. I’ve published a couple of young-adult novels and several books of poetry, including Swallowed Up in Victory, a long narrative poetry based on the Civil War. My most recent are Redemption from FutureCycle Press and a chapbook, Magnetic North, from Finishing Line Press.
Lights out, my arm entwined in yours, you say goodnight and float a wistful little thought that’s like a fairytale: It’s break of day. Now, I’m a princess, you’re a prince! You caught your breath, then whispered something more. I bought quite willingly into that sentiment— We’re young again! Sweetly as it was meant, it haunted me. I couldn’t say why till I grasped what it portended: days of hurt erased. The drunken-sailor nights, dawns filled with payback dread, erased. And (given the sort of water torture that is debt) the curt, tormenting voice of prudence quieted, my partner in crime, my partner in bed.
She had come to that state where the horror of the universe And its smallness are both visible at the same time…. —A Passage to India A stew of sky has choked the 19th floor; the town clock boiled to ochre, a dying sun. Drawn through the day’s last maze at half-past four, you bound from shock to shock until…you’re done with lab-rat patience. Gloomily, you note the seedy architectural collage, the urban cut-and-paste, abandon hope for more sublimity than lurks in hodge- podge enclaves where our helter-skelter lives just map behaviorists’ old sweet/sour ploy— “avoidance and approach,” in psycho-jive— the gauntlet run for paychecks and the joy of schoolboy freedom, as you thread the gray- ing streets to reach the light at the end of day.
©2021 Lee Passarella
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