Thursday, December 24, 2009


[“People who do not know what to do with their time
and they will ache to infect you with this from a distance..”
-Charles Bukowski, The Telephone.]

When I hear the ring
I break a cold sweat.
My stomach tumbles around.
There is always someone out there
That wants to steal time
or piss their neuroses on you.

“Hello. Yes. What’s up?”
And they tell me,
and tell me again
to be sure I heard
and react in a way
expected of me.

They would like to come over.
They would like to meet for coffee.
They want a face to face.

I have to pretend I’m interested if
they tell me about their flu symptoms
or spongy prostate.

The phone is for emergencies and making appointments.

I use it twice a year to make a dental appointment.
I use it once a month to call my money man.
I use it once a month to check a bank balance.
I may call an old friend on Thanksgiving.

The phone is for emergencies.
I my carry it in the car if I go out of town.

The phone is for emergencies.
If I feel like my heart is exploding,
I can call the medics.

People ache for me to call. I have to say no.
I learned how to say no from my old boss.
He told me one day, I have to learn how to say no.
He asked “do you want to know how?”
He looked me square in the eye, and shook his head.
“No. No.”
It was easy. It was simple.

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