Manifesto

I ignore everything that’s disagreeable.
I am ignoring a lot of stuff!
The cold, stiff drip of the shower after the heat’s run out, I don’t feel it.
When I see a stranger crying alone in her car
parked outside the post office I do not stop.
I have already forgotten the name of the town
where fourteen people were shot to death this afternoon
while they sat in their chairs learning verb agreement and proper nouns.
Some nights there is a homeless man stretched out on my apartment stoop
and I step over him as if he were not there:
what homeless man, what town and tears.
I want to help but more than that,

I guess, I want to be sane.
Still, walking home at six A.M.
day doesn’t seem like the afterparty of night anymore
and I’m a lame excuse. The broken beer bottles on the sidewalk
and lost underwear. Outside the Circle K
the clerk with the chin strap is smoking a cigarette;
he is always kind. He catches my eye and waves.

– ST

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