Sometimes at night I get in this mood
And my mind separates from my body and goes swimming
in a quiet pool, suspended weightless
surrounded by the droplet
that reflects the sound of out there.
My body moves still, numbed and soft
skin prickling in the artificial heat
kept close by off-white walls
that pucker in the upper corners
where they meet a ceiling so full of cracks
that it’s easy to imagine slipping up through them
and into the purple night that settles over
town and country and a man walking his dog after a long day of work.
Irresponsibility finds oppression around any corner
and so operates underground, shifting
from house to apartment to highway-side tattoo parlor
keeping ahead of the radio dial
keeping abreast of the novel and wrong.
The old incandescent bulb flickers on at the end of each day
bathing the cracked paint porch in sepia
that casts far enough into the shadows to
bring the rusted pickup into semi focus.
One stray drop ripples the scene
sepia to black and white and back
to the Technicolor of the bathroom mirror
the oily squeak of an old radiator.
Purple arcs in all directions,
a punctured filament, at least one thing you can trust in
to be in its place
until eventually it isn’t and you and all of your friends
feel confused and realize that it didn’t ever affect your life much
at all, but still it’s gone and you aren’t used to that so you call me up
knowing that I won’t answer because I’m swimming
deep in the cave system that winds beneath
the back alleys and rises at a certain point
where you can see for miles
and you can trace the path you took to get there
it seems so long but you know it won’t take
but a few moments to be right back
in the sepia syrup
responsible and clear skinned
and buttoned up with a crisp ironed collar
and purple necktie
walking into glass again
at eight forty five in the morning.