Sunday, January 30, 2011

Cry Uncle

Everyday somebody's telling me to put
my hands up, somebody's telling me
to put my hands in the air.
I can't tell anymore what's a threat
or what's an exhortation,
but I'm generally inclined to do as
I'm told and so I spend
much of the time I spend by myself,
which is much of the time,
moving around with my hands up
and my hands in the air,
which are really, it occurs to me,
the same damn thing.
Either way, it makes me feel
oddly liberated and captured
all at the same time, a hostage
surrendering with a combination
of ecstasy and relief.
If we are to submit to forces
greater than ourselves,
let us dance our way into
the arms of our captors,
our hands up and empty
of all weapons but joy,
and with the secret understanding
that there really are no forces
greater than ourselves.


  1. A strange burst of optimism from you. Are you ill?

  2. I only feel good and powerful when I'm dancing, Tom, and then it's right back in the soup.

  3. when i was in college, i lived illegally in an industrial warehouse art studio. when i discovered poetry, stranded at a greyhound bus station in iowa with nothing but many hours and a poetry anthology, i returned home and spent the next couple years finding beautiful poetry and hanging it on my lofty crumbling walls, such that one person commented that they felt like they were stepping into a three-dimensional book.

    i would have put this one up.

  4. To Be Alive
    - Gregory Orr

    To be alive: not just the carcass
    But the spark.
    That's crudely put, but…

    If we're not supposed to dance,
    Why all this music?

  5. "surrendering with a combination
    of ecstasy and relief." I guess a little quote comment has become my thing. I am really enjoying your work.