all day long
I vacillate between intention;
maybe a couple steps forward
or skirting one craving
and then the immediate withdrawal,
the later three walks and
four coffees, twelve cookies
and picking a fight;
my habits,

my beloved
hermeticism and the double meaning of
everything and I’m
ambivalent about every choice
I’ve given myself over to;
even in completion,
I shrug.
let the wind take me.

now I am
in Philadelphia,
and I have an Access card to
buy toilet paper.
I am also  writing letters
lying
saying I got into Temple’s
education program and I’m
raising my hand in meetings
to volunteer for service
earnestly.
getting invited to social things
and showing up early.
crying endlessly and in public,
which refreshes me.

I am dog sitting; house sitting for
money in Queen Village,
and I spend the days
drinking their coffee,
sneaking their chocolates.
using their washer for my own
heavy blankets,
and walking the pit bull
without the choke chain
she gave me.
not trying to make a fuss
about it even though I do want
to put it around the woman
walk her on her fours and
then tug a little bit.
that’s a part of
innate ferocity.

it stays boiling.

I observe the doors of people
in Society Hill: clean black or
mahogany with the numbers painted on
them or in brass next to their
outdoor lanterns, their empty
flower boxes soon to be leaking
zinnias, petunias, geraniums.
soon to be fingered,
picked by me.
I am obsessed with the material
possessions of others
and knowing I’m no good
marked this place for
later:

we should rob them.

I begin to circle the area
with the pit bull
understanding clemency only
gifted to the few who
have smiles like
little sunshines
and white skin,
tanned but porcelain
otherwise.

“Society Hill”

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