Sunday, September 2, 2012

Shadow Play

You know how we do that?
Conjuring up “friends”
when we feel
what we want to say
will sound truer
from elsewhere:
Oh, I have a friend who used to…

I think I am one of them.
I mean I am one
of those “friends”
conjured up
by someone somewhere
using me as a proxy,
tentative self.

Like a test-drive vehicle.
If it works,
they make more;
if not,
they improve upon it.
Or simply give up.

No complaints: first drafts
cannot  be disowned easily.
They go
into air-conditioned
glass cases in museums,
but only
if their author dies
a memorable death.

Even when committed
to the bin,
there is no taking away – I
was the seed, the kind
that wrestles gravity and rises,
growing tentacles of truth
gripping firmly both air and earth.
I now have a life of my own.

Or, at least, I
will be their shadow,
long and unignorable
when they are slanted away
from truth, and shrunk
and free
only when it shines
right over them.

I am out even on nights
when the moon lets me
follow them
or lead them into caverns of truths,
where they drink and dance
to songs and whiplashes,
where they howl and cheer,
yell and scream, and they don't
give a fuck. 

That's when I love them most.
That's when I leave them alone.
And they, me.