Mother’s Day Ode to the Walking Wounded

I have looked at these things, these dramas, these

Games that people play from so many angles and different perspectives

That I have confused myself.

Writing about them in the third person, I’ve invented characters with pain so
intense only

Hell could relieve them,

Some of them are believers of political rhetoric and sinister propaganda

And religious dogma so inane that believing must be a sure sign

Of mental illness.

Walking in the park, or standing motionless in front of a spectacle that

They never notice, you can find them gnawing on

The bread of life, fingers dripping with the sticky entrails of their feast.

God, their god smiling over the endless fetish of their insatiable desire

Goads them on to

Conquest and empty absolution.

Sometimes they gather in rooms with gilded altars and raise their voices

In song, self absorption and vanity, soft little prayers

Floating slowly up to heaven on little, fluttering wings

But most are mired in the filth

Of petty self righteousness and tacky, meaningless, pretentious displays that

Fall over on the ground in the rain.

Then there are the ones who live in a world of plastic things

That don’t quite work.

They keep throwing them away and replacing them but each substitute is

More perplexing, and more expensive, the instructions

Make less sense, and the easy open packages only open

When chewed apart by teeth.

Out on the highway they feel the pulse of the world, they drive

Here and there but nowhere they ever get to is where they want to stay.

They chat incessantly into cell phones but most of what they say

Is never final, it only adds to the crazy chatter, the only constant,
intelligible word is more,

And at the end of the day more is never more, the more there is

The less the soul is full

Tomorrow they will try again to fill it up while it only empties its essence in

But then there is you with the center always holding

True to the simplicity, the essence, the aura

Simply predictable because truth never changes it stands fast

While fashion becomes extinct, styles one by one drop into memory

Some locked away in forgotten closets

Are resurrected and celebrated

For a little while.

In your little house there is always the real, there is

Black coffee and nicotine stained fingers the eagle’s view out your window

Close friends and family meeting and embracing on

Holidays and occasionally by accident, furniture well worn

And loved, the use not fading away the memories

Lodging intrinsically into the fabric of your surroundings.

You are an inspiration to me with your minimalist lifestyle and your

Disdain for the plastic and the disposable, your

Quiet patience with the great unwashed, you have traded the quest for the

For the essence so long ago that the road is now old and worn for you

But it is still going only forward,

Now there is only pain and loss ahead.

This is the way of the warrior, and now even in the golden years of living

Is the choice of a warrior to know that your most important work must

Be done in pain and hopelessness. To know that the desire for things is

All around you but to be dead to the earthy passion of it all.

To sense at the end of life that the love of the temporary is an illusion that
shields the heart from pain

Leaves one alone and small in the big unknown.

If you could see in yourself what I see you would know how incredibly beautiful
and special you are,

You would see the years of decision and childbirth, work, peace, love, loss,
pain, joy and soul changes

Emerging beyond it and looking in the mirror one day and asking

Is this really, really me

It’s never a question of what does it mean, in the end we all wind up wondering

How did this all happen?

As all things go, we are eternal, even when the hour grows dark

Dreams of death and agony and separation from love and comfort

Wrap their steely tongues around our dreams,

We must cling to our beliefs

I’ve thought about this a lot and I’ve come to believe

These things we have come to feel, these items that we’ve trusted to be true

Are in fact real.

– Mike Glover