He said, “Clock.” The word was
a little knot of sound,
a hammer blow on something hollow and distant.

“So life happens like this?
So the knowledge spurts for a moment
then clots to a gritty dull crust…?”

He wanted to suggest that understanding was like blood.
Was simile still a valid figure,
given the weight of this final isolation?

From the fourth-floor window, he saw
lovers kissing at the bus stop
before they would rise

to dissolve in the sharp wash of blue wind.
It had nothing to do with him.
It had nothing to do with him.

© 2002 James Owens.  All rights reserved. 



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