monday, october 17

(nobody wants another meditation on mortality
some days it's just hard to write any other thing

nobody wants to rake the leaves, most of the
time, but they keep falling)

i was carefully arranging textfiles
and stacks of paper the other day
and i got to wondering
what am i doing this for?
what posterity etc. is waiting this
particular, deliberate tedium?

i got to thinking just now about
my great-grandfather keeping a journal
of his travels northwest of kansas,
some several lifetimes before i was born

in an age when i suppose half the
dying shape of the older continent
before what his people made of it
was yet within living memory

his journal's in my closet, in a box,
inside a plastic bag
i've thought now of transcribing it
for something like half my life

it wouldn't come to many words, or
i suppose convey much new information, but
i may yet put on cotton gloves and carefully
photograph those brittle pages

(there is probaby no true reckoning with the past, if we
are honest; no logic that can operate over the
accumulated data and balance the losses half-traced therein)