Chad Grant: “Midlife Reflection”

Midlife Reflection

If my lot in life seems revolting it’s only because I’ve lived the life of the mind, taking a page from Bukowski, I carry the pity of my peers like a notebook full of poems in a rucksack full of books. There’s no money for would-be writers like me, but the sheer pleasure I get from a piece is payment enough. Perhaps I should let my passions go–but isn’t pleasure something that you love? “Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. . .” is all Hamlet to me. The realities of life are my ever-growing furrows of adulthood.

But why do we play such games? To tie our sanity to the bootstraps of someone else’s narrative of normality–a wife, some kids, a dog, and all of the etceteras which go into it? But when you love. . . . who am I to say that I’d be fitter or happier with a “normal” life?

On New Year’s day I ended up rewatching an old Twilight Zone episode of a young couple bound by their superstitions when their car breaks down, and they go into a diner in this small town only to spend what I assume was the majority of their lives there feeding a fortune telling machine pennies in fear of what was next.

Well, what’s next? My life is not some cheap facsimile.


The Emperor’s New Clothes

Sown from a thought
a tapestry of rhyme
designed line by line in ink
in a corner of my mind.

I disguise my fear
behind a cloud of smoke
and a mirror
The perfumes from the leaves
vanish in a breeze.

Threading the words with a pen
I begin to rehearse
A verse that I’ve spun
wiith the tip of my tongue.

What are you looking for?