dumplings

deleting poetry is so much easier than
crossing it out
crumpling it up
burning it
shredding it
eating it
dissolving it in gin

oh that i could say that about stuff i have said aloud

and there is that moment of Shelly-like abandon when
my finger comes down insouciantly upon the submit button
and i spend the rest of the afternoon checking to see
how far down the page my comment has been pushed
out of view before i venture to step outside my door again.

as if the whole world outside were, hah, like watching the Internet.

but i am an old soul. i can take it. sauce me up with words
and i will arrange them into … some wonton-shaped thingy.

that didn’t come out like i intended.

the sauce metaphor does go with the dumpling thing though.

and dumplings are grand little things, aren’t they? i like them
quite a lot. quite good. mmmm. hungry now.

and yet the things words won’t do for me i get some other
thing to do. i can say things with hamburger helper that
Byron would have laughed at, out of embareassment, to
cover up the fact that he was actually envious of my
prowess but too polite to let it on directly to me.

and so the day ends with my inner monologue still gibbering
on like an auto-linked series of youtube videos of consumer
electronics unpackaging walkthroughs.

this is how wallace stevens lived, i think to myself, as i drift
off to sleep. and try in vain not to wonder if he really thought
to himself, “this is how wallace stevens lived.”

and in my dreams i am still talking inside my head, but now it
is not me but an octopus but it sounds exactly the same as me.

and when i wake up i don’t know if i am an octopus who
looks and sounds just like me or me who looks and sounds
just like an octopus. but the neighbor’s dog looks at me in
a way that settles the matter on the side of the latter, when
i step out to check the weather the old-fashioned way, by
stretching and yawning groggily on the porch in my
underwear because i forgot to put on my robe.