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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Poem 21/30 Seeing You

More than 2/3 of the way there and I dug up an old prompt of Rachel McKibbens' http://rachelmckibbens.blogspot.com/2009/01/poetry-exercise-1.html in which the writer is asked to write down 3 superpowers, write a bland journal entry, and then choose one of the superpowers and rewrite. The following is my journal entry, followed by my poem. Rachel wrote that she was inspired by Louis Jenkins' poem, Walking Through a Wall, which you can read here http://robinchapmanspoemaday.blogspot.com/2005/03/by-louis-jenkins-walking-through-wall.html

Journal Entry:
The bus made a lot of stops. Some lady in a wheelchair needed to be strapped in. I got off at 14th Street and Avenue A because so many people were getting on. I walked one block and bought a medium size coffee at Bruno’s. I decided to get a low-fat marble muffin. It cost more than I thought it would. I crossed the street, entered the building, climbed one flight of stairs, unlocked the door, said hello to Maria, went to my desk, ate part of the muffin and drank the coffee.

Seeing You

I don’t know why I laughed at the bus driver,
maybe because he looked so serious and intent
on his task, lowering the ramp for the grumpy
yet regal wheelchair-bound lady who never raises
her eyes or smiles or says thank you. Fortunately,
I had made myself invisible the second he hit
the lever for the kneeling function, as I’m
acutely aware of my unfortunate tendency
to laugh loudly and inappropriately at the wrong
times. Funerals, obviously. Once, when my dog
screamed as the vet administered a distemper
shot. She’s hysterical, my mother explained
nervously, since she didn’t want the animal
doctor to think she’d raised a sociopath. But
that was before I’d learned how to disappear
at will, as I did this morning, on the M14A bus.
I reached my destination without any additional
outbursts, bought my usual coffee at Bruno’s.
Pedro, the sweet Mexican guy remembered my
voice and did a pretty good job of placing
the cup in my invisible hand, made his usual
joke You look very nice today and we laughed
in a normal way, which snapped me back
to visibility, and fortunately I did look
rather attractive in a new purple sweater
and matching eye shadow, so Pedro did not
have to renege on his compliment, and the day
managed to pass with neither laughter nor tears.

© puma perl, 4/21/11

1 comment:

  1. *standing ovation*

    I simply ADORE this!!! My favorite so far of your 30/30 (though I haven't finished reading them all) and the ending is killer. Have I told you lately how much you f*cking ROCK, Puma?? :)

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