“I took a nap and wept for no reason.”

– Jim Harrison



Life asserts itself; intrudes.

The mother cries
in the night when she is sure
everyone is asleep.
The stepfather draws
in a deep breath –
once an hour –
releasing a sigh
for the lost life,
the lost first family,
the lost wholeness
of body and mind.
Your mirror is no longer
the friend it used to be;
the sculptor has chiseled

Your best resort
is a few minutes sleep.

Just a few minutes sleep.

Just some rest.


* * *


Lucky Day 13 of Jilly’s “28 Days of Unreason” challenge.  




12 thoughts on “Mechanisms

  1. The title is key in this – coping mechanisms. I looked at the opening line, kept solitary, and thought about how that spreads across the rest of the poem. We learn how to cope with the intrusions of life, which is a messy thing, and long for some rest from all of that. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You chiselled some profound lines here Charley – am struck by the solitariness of the couple with their coping mechanisms and thus how burdensome ageing and loss and regret becomes – there are suicidal undertones in the sleep

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “the sculptor has chiseled
    deeper.” — that adds a strong punctuation (puncturation?) to the lines above. It is all a sense of loss, but every day chiseled a bit deeper.


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