188: Failure

188: Failure

188: Failure

by Eugene Gloria

Read the automated transcript.

I think I will do nothing now
but listen. Listen and rest
my head on the noise of familiars.
To accrue what I hear into myself
and let the pitter-patter,
the birdy chatter, the kokoro of the core,
or the ta Dum, ta Dum ta . . .
accumulate in me.

How Hopkins does it,
holds us captive— I cannot tell—.
Or how Pessoa makes us
forget how to spell . . .

Today I felt like a failure,
a harangue bird whose calls jolt
like a doorbell, or smother
like a peacoat in summer.

My malarkey is no more
No mas talky talky por mio.
For I know failure well.
I live in her house and make her bed.

Serve her tea and toast
and sweep up her mess—.
You can say she’s harsh,
but she’s also a kind master,
whispering the infinite
in my ear when I choose to listen.

"Failure" by Eugene Gloria from SIGHTSEER IN THIS KILLING CITY by Eugene Gloria, copyright © 2019 Penguin. Used by permission of Penguin.