tagNon-Erotic PoetryA Long, Empty Space

A Long, Empty Space

byDeepAsleep©

I am the great white waste,
a slacker genius.
I know some physics, kid,
I know some philosophy.
I can convert binary,
balance a budget,
appreciate art, jazz, jazz as art,
art as jazz, critique a novel,
a movie, a performance,
tell you what bands are hot
and what bands just ain’t.
I’m good with algebra, kid,
good with a pool cue, girls, bartenders,
geometry, shot glasses, parents and
everything that involves reading or talking fast.

I can’t sing, or play an instrument,
but I can whistle like a motherfucker.

I picked up all these skills,
like picking locks and fixing plumbing,
something like a jack of all trades,
I’d like to think,
but more like a jack of all asses.

It’s an unfortunate fact,
ladies and germs,
that an ability to learn is not
we repeat, not,
an ability to succeed.

You could call all night diners
think tanks all night long,
but the reality is that there’s no
we repeat, no,
government think tank for pursuing the idea
of a shotgun-shell propelled pogo stick,
and what would happen if you used it on the moon.

And there’s no support group for being a disappointment,
no meadow for black sheep to graze the days
happily away.
There's nowhere to go if the wheels are spinning,
but the car just ain’t moving.

Drive and motivation are hard to learn,
if you’ve spent your life trying to live down;
down from expectations,
down from potential.
23 years trying to be less than exceptional, because of fear.

Great potential, applied inappropriately,
leads, unfortunately,
to this conclusion:
“I hate it here.”

Where is here and
where to go?
Where do you find the will,
how do you pick a path?

I used to dream like clouds on the horizon, kid,
soft things packed shoulder to shoulder,
as far as the eye could see.
Now, with my first grey hair
and the extra forehead I didn't have last year,
I look ahead at a long, empty space,
with nothing between me and sunset.

It scares me.

Did I need God? A role model?
Should I be like you, kid?
Nose to the grindstone so long,
you forgot what the rest of the world looks like?
How 'bout it?
Wanna be my role-model, cuz?
Wanna lead a failure to a place where
dreams don't get crammed into
six hundred square feet, with one bath
and a kitchenette?

Yeah, you're busy, I know,
and you wrote me off years ago,
when twenty one hour semesters called the tune
that you marched to.

So, I was off smoking pot,
working dead end jobs,
trying to find happiness overnight at the stores,
gas-stations, warehouses, laundromats,
fast food joints,
doing dishwashing, stocking, stacking,
taking money and shit from people who had no idea
no idea at all
that the guy on the other side should've been,

well.

Should've been more.

I shouldn't have asked, anyway -
You've got that boyfriend with the quick hand
and the wandering eye to worry about,
gotta sell those pharmaceuticals,

And really, I should do it myself, huh?

Modeled from a series of conversations with a highly successful cousin - It's mostly an interior monologue, things I'd never say...the selfish things you're never certain where to put down, like a coffee cup without a coaster.

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