THIS BRIGHT LIGHT

Posted: December 7, 1994 in Poetry
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Ah, this bright light —
I was a closet Vampyre,
dancing on cardboard tombstones
with flexible skeletons
who beat chopsticks on
overturned Folger’s coffee cans
— it shrivels the flesh
and weakens the bones.
I’ve heard of the process of aging before,
from people older than I
(that was all that mattered back then),
but I opened the door
just by living this long;
it was a voluntary process
to keep myself “sane”.
My closet life still lives —
the dust and cobwebs are real,
cardboard and coffee cans lay around
— it’s a mess just like I left it.
I have little time to clean up,
much less to dust them off and play;
something I swore I’d never say.
I wished to conquer this aging
in this age.
I watched the best voices of
previous generations
wither and fade,
mature and become jaded
as either adults or escapists —
I wanted to outdo them all
by keeping busy
preserving those things
that people forgot to remember:
those things that go bump in the night
and lurk shiny red-eyed in the closet.
This bright light
— reality for those who think it so —
is the bread and butter of adulthood,
and it cannot be avoided
through ignorance or rebellion:
they just won’t go away.
This revelation comes with
the exposure to aging;
the fact that changed my whole game plan.
Closets, shadows, mysteries and skeletons
beating Folger’s coffee cans with chopsticks
are for children and lunatics:
people who aren’t grown up enough
to withstand the scrutiny
of this bright light.
I hold to my original wish —
I have remembered so far
you must bend like the willow
young grasshopper —
Seuss did it,
King does it;
to each his or her own closet.
Oil your hinges,
dust your skeletons,
tune your Folger’s coffee cans:
Magick is the marrow
that runs in those bones,
and still fires the eyes shiny red.

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