Ink Runs From My Mouth

Ink runs from the corners of my mouth.
There is no happiness like mine.
I have been eating poetry…
–Mark Strand


That’s what it’s like for me when things are going well.

When the veil between me and the fire of my self is thin.

Poetry, then, is more satisfying than food; more life-giving than rain.

The boundaries of my skull contain all that I require.

I need not fear boredom, or loneliness, or abandonment.

And when the veil is very, very thin–I need not even fear dying.

I want more days like that.

I want to remember the truth about how much I want that.

I Will Very Soon Begin

Here lies a poet who would not write
His soul runs screaming through the night,
“Oh give me paper, give me pen
And I will very soon begin.”

Poor Soul, keep silent. In Death’s clime
There’s no pen, paper, notion–and no Time.

–“Here Lies” by Stevie Smith


“Very soon.” That is the key phrase. Even in tormented regret, it’s still “very soon” and not “right now.” 

I wonder what stands in the way of “right now” for that poor dead poet?

Does what stands in the way of “right now” for us make any more sense?