they

6 Aug

they said i wrote much like Carver so i went and read Carver
and they were right it was strange
i had never read Carver before but there it all was
reading Carver i was reading myself
only in print in between fancy covers and accolades from other writers
blurbs from newspapers and literature magazines
the first Carver i ever read was a story called Fat
about a heavy heavy man in a restaurant who used the plural
when he talked about himself
you know like: we’re gonna have the dessert we’ll take cream in that
the second Carver story i read was one about watering plants
and feeding the cat in the neighbors’ apartment while they were gone
i fell in love with Carver and i wondered whether i’d fallen in love with myself
for the first time

they said i played much like Art Blakey
but when i first heard Art Blakey i laughed at how off they were
nobody plays like him
i fell in love with Art Blakey and at the same time
i fell out of love with my playing
and i put down the sticks for good

nobody really reads here we all pretend to
but really we’re just watching one another the scene
the woman in shorts with the cottage cheese thighs
smiling and thumbing through shelves and shelves of pretty journals
when we’re caught looking by other readers
we throw our eyes back onto the page and pretend
when they’re caught looking they do the same
nobody really reads here

i can’t see because there’s a gargantuan rack with useless shit on it
but somewhere beyond it stands a clerk with verbal diarrhea
i know him he’s an old man who probably means well
but he fucking talks incessantly
and he sounds like Kermit the Frog
he is the type of friendly retired guy who i want to strangle for his friendliness
it’s probably genuine he’s probably lonely
but that voice it infringes on my sanity on my solitude on my time
he’s worked at this bookstore for years
and he sounds like Kermit the Frog
he is the type of friendly retired guy clerk who calls out everything
NEXT GOOD AFTERNOON MA’AM WILL THAT BE ALL
(i’ve always hated that question, no, there’s a fucking invisible book here i’d like you to ring up as well)
OK SO THEN EIGHTEEN NINETY-FIVE TWENTY-TWO NINETY-NINE
SIXTEEN NINETY-FIVE AND FOURTEEN SEVENTY-FIVE
AND WHAT A LOVELY YOUNG LADY YOU HAVE WITH YOU HOW OLD IS SHE
THAT’S SUCH A LOVELY AGE
and he sounds like Kermit and he’s loud

they all are

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4 Responses to “they”

  1. vibes01 06/08/2010 at 5:21 PM #

    nobody really reads here we all pretend to

    aint that the truth

  2. Lx 07/08/2010 at 7:06 AM #

    some are TRYING to read yea? but Evil Kermit resonates too loudly

  3. vibes01 07/08/2010 at 7:37 AM #

    suckering suckatash

  4. darthvaderjr 07/08/2010 at 2:08 PM #

    enjoyed. dead-on. a deadly trifecta: the respect for the kindness of strangers, the need for solitude, the extreme irritation of infringement on said need for solitude.
    thanks for sharing.

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