By Joseph Hesch
Outside my office, within which
I breed competent lies, appears
a gloriously green wall of flora.
Oaks and maples spread natural curtains
over the unnatural expanse between
my lofty nest and the red-brick
buildings across the way.
The too-short between-seasons
reveal the scars of urban inattention
to what goes on behind old buildings' backs:
the debris scatter of soggy cardboard boxes,
the emerald-glint broken bottles of cheap wine,
and bushels of cigarette butts.
Also, if you look really hard, really long,
you’ll see bony carcasses of
the now-meatless dreams
of the human livestock who stayed on
these farms far too long.
Back inside, I sense the hums of ceiling fans,
of phony fluorescent suns above me
and the coaxial-rooted box at my feet.
But I want to stand beneath the actual sun
and travel through naturally moving air.
I want to hear the ring of real fountains,
the salty avalanche of crashing surf,
the chiming of God’s waterfalls.
I want to touch and be touched by people
who have more to think, talk and dream about
than their wasted pasts and pipedream futures.
I don’t want to have to address my life
in agri-metaphors anymore because to see
its reality is too depressing, too devoid of joy.
Someday I’m going to leave this behind.
See, I’m tired of this lying altogether.
A couple of weeks ago, when my One Stop Poetry friend Claudia Schönfeld interviewed me, she noted that some of my poetry reveals what she called "frustration" with my day job. I won't say it's frustration, but I have gotten tired and introspective as I creep closer to another landmark in my working life. So I thought I'd get something ready to carve on such a landmark. Sorry for its length. That's not like me. But the emotion and impressions are. Maybe you can relate.