Sunday, January 20, 2013

Water Boy

(Rewrites of the Rites of Spring)

Pay attention to the nice things people say about you
Write 'em down on tossed cigarette boxes

Ends meet and go through the meat grinder
Will I hear my drowning spiral?
Now? No.

Am I passing through the edges, bumping in the maze
Do I need healing or relaxing?
Lax? Me?

I saw the Water boy sweating
on a hot day, drinking water,
he didn't hurt himself with wine
He did talk with himself

By fall we reached the Water Boy,
didn't drink, smoke or fend for himself.
I bought him socks
A Christian brought him foods

I hope no one hollered at him
Someone stole from him
Everything—clothes and writings—
his thoughts dragged off cigarette boxes.

I made it through the winter
with thoughts now on candy boxes
letters, numbers...

I see a cream-colored cat on a high fence
Can you save her from the barbed wire?
In the rain? I tried.

All I could do was give her a name: Barbie
Barbie fed by a cute cat lady of 80
who was frightened the kitty would fall
I said I'd save her, but she disappeared.

My Water Boy had a Texas accent
People thought he had a mental illness
He was subject to being stolen from, and humbled
to sit on a park bench 'til he followed Barbie away.