Posts tagged ‘Failure’

July 13, 2015

UNDIMINISHED

Acquired Waste

From now on I’m going to be a shadow
of my former shadow:
Living in the present, negligibly,
and regretting the past, sweepingly.
As for the future, I’m not sure if I have one.
But I’ve been saying that for a long time,
and I’m still here, even if I am
ten years behind my time.
Make that fifteen.

April 18, 2015

LIFE WITHOUT LIMITS

Imagining

I can feel time passing me by,
speeding up as I slow down,
creating the kind of deceptive, reflexive glory
that happens when the speed of the past
overtakes the slowed down present.

I was riding into the promise
of a life without limits,
infinitely rich with possibilities,
when the future suddenly turned into the past.
And looking back upon it,
it wasn’t hugely satisfying.

March 6, 2015

Realistic Remains

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Shakespeare, Proust, Kafka, Camus, Orwell, Gissing: What do each of these distinguished authors have in common? They all produced a lot of great work, but surely their most important unifying quality is that they were all younger than me when they died. I have outlived Keats by a quarter of a century: that’s a morbidly sobering thought. But let’s leave poets out of this. In the time it took Balzac to write 91 novels, covering every aspect of the human condition in its myriad complexity, I have produced two very slender volumes of poetry, addressing a rather more limited sphere of activity… or rather inactivity.

October 20, 2014

A Richer Victory

Bitterness

Broke, bitter and alone.
What more could I possibly ask for?
I have failed, at last,
beyond my wildest expectations.
I don’t understand
why I’m still not satisfied.

November 8, 2013

Improvidence

Improvidence

The other lives I might have led
all now might as well be
dead. Survived by no one.
Barren, without issue of  any sort:
this withered bud, failed
in art and love. With no time left
to change my course. But time enough
for infinite remorse.

October 10, 2013

CXIII

Failure

There’s no point forcing it.
I’ve been forcing it for long enough:
going through the motions, motionlessly,
directionlessly, pleasurelessly. Attempting
is no longer tempting.  Other than to furnish myself
with further proof of incapacity, there doesn’t seem
to be much point in trying anymore.
Maybe I can give up after all.
I should never have doubted my ability
in that area.

 

 

October 7, 2013

FEELINGS

Failing at Feeling

I may as well face the fact
that I am no longer capable
of doing what I once believed
I was capable of  doing.
Not that I had any reason to assume
that I was capable of it.
It was just a feeling that I had.
And now I have a different feeling.

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September 28, 2013

That Time of Day

Termination

A destructive overawareness of time
knives through the hot empty spaces
of an afternoon. A sense of urgency vaporizing
into torpor. Even the traffic sounds tired.
Do something, I tell myself.
What?  The same thing I’ve been doing
every day for years on end
with varying degrees of failure.

September 9, 2013

All Down the Line

Many Unrealized Revelations

Passing the various stations,
the vicarious stations,
watching the other passengers get off,
without baggage, at the earliest stop –
once they feel they’ve done their time,
but wanting credit for riding it to the end of the line.
For at the terminal, what awaits?
Just a faded ticket, out of date.

 

July 29, 2013

XIX

Safety in Numbness

I do not know the meaning of  hard work.
But I know what it means to adhere
to a schedule of  diligent work-avoidance
as if it were a regular job: a strict routine
of  wandering around and lying down
and brooding over wasted time.
I don’t like to mix business
with anything, least of all pleasure.

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