by Chris Gage
The dictionary is a collection of scientists
who stick pins in butterflies
and don't believe in children.
Yet they've taken it upon themselves
to cure us of how poorly we sleep.
"Dementia praecox" became "schizophrenia."
Thank you Eugen Bleuler; 1908 on
In the sterilized hospital on the hill:
the scar across the surgery patient's chest;
the violent slash of a comma.
It's another ordinary day,
and the radio announcer reads the traffic and weather report:
"The roads into and out of the city are at a standstill."
I could go on about this... but it looks like we won't be going
anywhere for a while.
There are few words as comforting as "sweater."
We've draped ourselves in language,
the way Eve's hair covers all but her appendages.
My friend Edgar wears heavy suits
that may never have known from a straight line.
Yes, you're seeing him right,
his glasses are held together by masking tape.
He stutters through his sentences
like he's pulling a cart that's riding on square wheels.
(Did I mention his name is Edgar?
He chose it himself.)
You can set your watch by his pratfalls.
Seen like this, he is hardly Darwin's fittest.
He's perfectly adapted to a world he doesn't live in.
The only way I can explain it:
he must be a superhero.
About the author:
Chris Gage lives in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.