Doing the Death We Call Pretty

Doing the Death We Call Pretty

I could look to the trees rusting in the rain,
doing the death we call pretty. Instead, I lord
a little over people parking, coming & going remark silent
on their body language—what gait is revealing—
while I wait by the printer for a report
I don’t even need. The chore, it let me remember
the world, free & flowing. On the hospital elevator

this morning, an ancient head-scarfed woman
w/a beard, wheeled by four jockeying children.
A young, halfway-pregnant couple. A woman my mother’s shape
in a bob wig, on her way to the breast clinic.
A surgeon’s Crocs streaked w/purple-brown blood.
Jackson Pollock. In the caf, a man tosses fries
into his mouth for breakfast, his entire head & eyes

bandaged up, white & soft as a Q-tip. Vision
is my drug. I can’t tell if it’s working, b/c how
did my life become a sequence of how do I kill
the next ten minutes? & the next ten? & the next?
When is someone going to finally turn to me & say,
all this time, what have you been doing?
It will be an accusation, & a mercy.