Poetry

From The Early Death of Men

IN OUR TWENTIES

Cigarettes were wonderful.
Drinking meant crazy.
Girls felt glorious.
Parents were distant
and hadn’t died or fallen ill yet.
Friends seemed plentiful.
Music couldn’t be loud enough.
Living with a lover
was like playing house.
Experience was urgent.
Summers meant travel.
Nights seemed infinite.
Hangovers ended quickly.
Work was provisional
until our talents were discovered.
Marriage was a life sentence.
Divorce, parole.
Success was more inevitable than failing.
Suicide seemed romantic.
The world was in love with us.
We were in love with the world.
We swooned inside its magnificent blue form.
We walked with lightness.
We even strutted.
We thought we were invincible.
We thought we were old.

THE MATH MORTICIAN

Instead of bodies, he sees numbers,
readies them up on time’s table,
dresses them in brackets,

uses algorithms over aspirate
to extract each variable,
hypothesizes infinity is but an empty set,

and life an interval between two ends,
whose value isn’t absolute,
when death’s the only constant.