Resignation

This is our life, our own special hell.

Try as we might, we’re still doomed to failure,

with no goods to bargain, no souls to sell.

 

It’s all vanity; trouble’s stickier than blood.

Forget your ambitions; you might as well sail your

little paper boats in puddles of mud.

 

I’m not pessimistic, just being real;

our wills are constrained like pent-up jailbirds,

so it’s easier to deal if you forget how to feel.

 

Armour up like a knight, but stay in the castle.

It’s dangerous out there on quests for the grail; turn

back now to safety, it’s not worth the hassle.

 

Limit to the back yard your adventurous forays,

because heroes are heroes only in stories.

 

Copyright 2019

T. Allen Culpepper

Commuter Sentence

Driving toward the cathedral in the morning, its spire

a compass needle center-lining the street,

the direction seems inevitable, if not exactly

intentional, a lucid focus in the sleepy haze;

wake and work–it’s something, it’s ¬†what we do

to keep the anxious-making world at bay,

or at least dilute the concentrated panic.

 

But in the traffic-crazy evening rush,

the needle has broken off, and puzzle-pieces

of clouds drift apart like renegade republics

dislodged from their positions on the map.

Sunset’s coming, but I’ll see it in the

rearview mirror while I’m riding east,

back into the chaos, as the credits roll.

 

Copyright 2019

T. Allen Culpepper