Lately I've Been Working As A Model In A Life Study Class
Words by Stephen Paul Miller (1990); music by Beth Anderson 1990
The view is made of colors which repeat the fog ad infinitum.
Where did I get caught up? I think in the idea of work.
Was I kidding? I even said "real work".
But this is work, I feel strongly about it;
It's even a kind of track, a bridge, a cross-ing.
There are millions of people on it.
There never was a present or a body, only contingencies.
I've always needed a minute to write a poem.
Am I scared? Have I decided? Are all expectations going to drop?
I have only taken about two steps on this fucking bridge.
I don't mind being lighthearted about it but I'm tired.
If this is a new form, there's no turning back. Do you think there is?
The fog fucks ad infinitum.
I know there's a certain balance I can obey
which at least won't disturb me.
Fuck that Buddhist cleaning woman
whom I loaned my MORNING OF THE POEM to seven years ago.
I've never really read all of that book because of her.
Fuck Billy Martin for getting in a brawl
outside of a topless bar in Arlington, Texas
and not showing up for his part in my play.
Fuck the love interest I fucked up because
no one introduced me to myself better a few years ago.
The wind is against me.
I kind of like it but don't really want to continue.
Isn't there a boat I can get on?
Yes, a big new rusted one.
I'd do it if I was on that track.
But the bridge doesn't lead to the water.
My life is shitty but it's mine. It breathes out.
You know, this is my dent in the pile I've made.
It's really done in units.
Each unit is something like a jump into a tub of jello wearing a tuxedo.
Every beat in my heart is something like one of those tuxedoes.
Fuck the New York poetry world
which doesn't even include me in its' congressional record.
Well, I suppose they exist and that's the main thing.
Fuck existence. For whom does it exist?
The wind is now high and arching through my hair.
I'm sorry. I don't want to do a survey. I will do a conversation.
I love the nature I have nothing to do with. Hey, that's me too.
A children's army passes but doesn't notice me. "Look at the ship," they
yell, "It's go-ing," says their commander, "under the bridge."
Copyright 1999 Beth Anderson
Last Modified April 20, 1999