Electricity Everywhere, Like Furniture Inside You


I'm on half spring break this week. What that means is I'm off school at one campus so I'm pretending I don't have much work to do and I'm playing on the internets more than I should. I've been creating a Pinterest page, which is fun, but it also sucks a good deal of time. I've also discovered some new blogs I've been enjoying. I cleaned the floor in my office. I certainly have gobs and gobs of actual work to do, but...


On wide open spaces, which is one of those eclectic blogs curated by smart gal Emily, who has great taste, I came across the poem "I Was Trying to Describe You to Someone" by Richard Brautigan. I'd never read any of his work and the poem is surprising and sweet at the same time. In the comments Nicole Docimo said it reminded her of this other poem by Tony Hoagland, which she couldn't find online anywhere, so she posted that on her blog. Go visit her blog, blue bicicletta, and see her lovely artwork. I've copied and pasted the Hoagland poem from her blog below because it's too wonderful not to share. Thanks for typing it Nicole.

By Tony Hoagland

Whatever happened to Cindy Morrison, that nice young lesbian?
I heard she moved to the city and got serious.
Traded in her work boots for high heels and a power suit.
Got a healthcare plan and an attorney girlfriend.

Myself, I don’t want to change.
It’s January and I’m still dating my checks November.
I don’t want to step through the doorway of the year.
I’m afraid of something falling off behind me.
I’m afraid my own past will start forgetting me.

Now the sunsets are like cranberry sauce
poured over the yellow hills, and yes,
that beauty is so strong it hurts –
it hurts because it isn’t personal.

But we look anyway, we sit upon our stoops
and stare, — fierce,
like we were tossing down a shot of vodka, straight,
and afterwards, we feel purified and sad and rather Russian.

When David was in town last week,
I made a big show to him of how unhappy I was
because I wanted him to go back and tell Susan
that I was suffering without her –

but then he left and I discovered
I really was miserable
– which made me feel better about myself –
because, after all, I don’t want to go through time untouched.

What a great journey this is,
this ordinary life of ants and sandwich wrappers,
of x-rated sunsets and drive-through funerals.

And this particular complex pain inside your chest;
this damaged longing
like a heavy piece of furniture inside you;
you carry it, it burdens you, it drags you down –
then you stop, and rest on top of it.

3 comments:

  1. My cousin recommended this blog and she was totally right keep up the fantastic work!

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  2. Thanks. I appreciate your enthusiasm as well as your cousin's I hardly post at all, though I have a list of dozens of things to write about. It all comes down to time. Hopefully when the school semester wraps up I'll be posting more.

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