a summer of packing and unpacking,
San Francisco, Crested Butte, San Diego,
and soon, France, vacations and conferences,
business attire and sandals, a French textbook
packed with good intention but left unopened.
Alas, they speak French in France and much
is to be learned, when to use "de" rather
than "de la", the rules go on and one,
I forget them as soon as I learn them,
taking on line quizzes with confidence only to
miss 7/20, quelle horreur!
I will unpack the book and open it tonight!
they make six figures and count pennies,
he had a beer, she drank water, he ate six
pieces of sushi, she had one, they obsess.
it's pocket change, a couple lattes here,
a pair of socks, less than the time spent
figuring it all out, it's pocket change,
it doesn't add up, I throw in an extra 20
so a million dollars of salaries can scurry
down the sidewalk in time for the last
raise a toast to those who do,
the ones who make a plan, send out notices,
risk themselves by being definite,
assign values to previously unknown parameters,
set due dates and assign tasks, they
are the ones who get shot from the
sidelines by snipers hidden behind
dark glasses, the ones who wear black
and clamor in a crowd of complaints.
I'd rather follow a half baked plan
than none when one is desperately
needed, at least it's progress, we'll
figure it out along the way.
noticing how she needs to spill the words out,
the tension in their words, the air is taut,
the stars are brighter here but the dogs bark
aggressively from behind tall fences.
crickets rub their legs together and the
scent of blooms fills the air in spite of the
arid landscape and dry sidewalks, the haze
of brown hillsides hangs in the air like
unspoken words waiting to be heard.
how many poems about packing,
the inefficiencies, the lack of planning,
the list, the looking for, the finding,
the distractions, how long it takes,
the decisions about how to, where to,
when to, which to, did I even book the
right day and date, the time, the broken
suitcase, the lost shoe, the wrong shoes,
the right outfit, a nice necklace, at least
those are true.