lunes, 29 de agosto de 2011


for & after JG

I’m proud of my expensive scrapbook,
so I flaunt it to my friends.
It’s bigger than theirs
and looks like it doesn’t need repairs.

“How’s your scrapbook?” someone asks at a reading.

“Fine!” I chirp up,
jumping at the chance
to extol the many virtues of my scrapbook.

Pretty soon a circle gathers
and everyone’s discussing its size,
editorial control, the artwork, the sheer lettuce
it takes to put the damn thing out.
If someone stays in a corner
someone else might notice and ask about theirs:
they never want to talk about it.
So they join in, chirping you-don’t-says,
and isn’t-that-amazings and

By the time I get home
I’m exhausted from bringing up
the subject of my scrapbook.
I get home and there it is,
not much on humility or balance
or good artists without the money
to study scrapbookery with me.
It’s all sub-culture, all glitz-trimming
and illusory contours, not even bothering to cover
up the cliquey pandering of the maintenance quota lining.

Late at night
when no one’s looking,
I’m embarrassed and ashamed of the damn thing,
kick it across the room
and stub my toe,
then toss it into the fireplace.
Maybe even burn it.

But I’m unwilling to fix it, and
even though I use it to meet women,
I am a man who wakes up depressed, lonely,
frustrated, who tries to burn his scrapbook,
his expensive shiny scrapbook.
And I haven’t the courage to do even that.

Imagine burning one’s scrapbook.
The shame would haunt me the rest of my career.
So after a while I pull it out of the fireplace,
dust it off and put it on the mantle and go to bed,
hearing its weeping throughout the night,
the low short moan just before daybreak.

My expensive scrapbook.

This poem is part of an unpublished manuscript called SONGS & ECHOES ~ The Pastiche Poems. Pastiche poems are those written in the style of another poet. 
© 1992 Hakim - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: use without profit allowed only with author’s express written permission. Please don't wake up my attorney. Please.

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