by M A Makowski

Last night, while my fiancée slept,
and my heart was hard at work
in the forgiveness factory
for all my petty failures as a man,
the crickets scratched at the Big Nothing.

The sky had winnowed the fruitful sun
into the Pacific as tho it were only so much spent chaff
and left behind a bunch of stars.

These kernels dispensed their quietude
like the dead.

Then the great distances proffered
magnitude for the clouds
that drifted like manatee in a black ocean
peppered with sea sparkle
over the vast mysteries and peoples
of this world.

I thought of the immensity of our universe
and how delightful it is to be so baffled and small,
stuffed with massive wonderment
and seeming insignificance.

I thought of all the people in my life who have died
and have been folded back into the loam and flora and apple and bird-belly
shit splats — and I wept at how beautiful
and fragile we are, and how a tiny virus
cannot live without us…

So we must have some significance, no?

And then I thought,
well if this is the case, perhaps the virus
should be a little kinder, more grateful;
show some charity, god damnit!

Lest it run out of homes
to make its little virus families in. Then what?

Well, then I walked down the driveway
toward the garage
in the soft, southern Californian night
listening to the gravel crunch beneath my feet.
I sat down to write
for the first time in a very long time
at my makeshift desk ensconced in the dry
musty garage smells of old wood,
tools, paints, oils and gas of lawnmower engine and…
and a rusted scythe
leaning in the darkened corner.

These silent tokens of such “manly” endeavors
made me grieve for my father.

Then I crossed my legs,
and as I squished my testicles,
I drank the half can of warm beer
I had left there earlier in the day.

Then I wept some more for reasons unknown.

And then I climbed into our warm bed
and wrapped my arms around this person
that I love and buried my face in her hair.

I sank slowly into an inky slumber
that was dreamless
and I floated far far away
like a cloud passing before the moon.

M A Makowski is an east coastal borstal bowery pull toy dehydrating in a south western desert. Born to die in a matter of time. He holds an MFA from Columbia University and is a connoisseur of complaint.

Image by Bruno /Germany from Pixabay.