Outside the Attic Window
Lifting my head up, to take a hold of my coffee cup, then taking a sip, thoughts likened to caterpillars start crawling over the top of my brainstem, my cerebellum, it’s not an unusual happening for me. It’s hard nowadays to hold onto thoughts-if I don’t write them down, they’re dead in only a few hours-that’s a quiver in the brain that says: by gosh, he’s still alive. I reach out for that thought, touch it, now it gears up it lunges towards me, terrified it leaps down to my teeth and jaw and stomach, and I got to write it down before it falls over on its face, that’s how it is when you get old. It is like a penguin trying to rearrange his or her flippers; it can’t be done-under normal conditions.
It is mid September now, evening in my apartment, the white curtains are akin to shadows, which comes from the deep darkness behind them, day’s insanity’s gone, I hope. A man in the evening doesn’t notice all that much, it’s normally-if not characteristically that is, time to settle down, it’s kind of when my impulses come to and through my mind too-producing my poetry (typically I say, not necessarily all the time, just more often than not-say:) such impulses come to my mind, come to be written down, come to be meditated on, see what trails those caterpillars left. Thoughts like the wind moves through my brain like branches growing every which way. Impulses, we have them: and they, these impulses, they want to live-they don’t want to be covered up, likened to what clouds do to the moon, especially in a poet, they even seem to have a will, don’t you agree? If you do, put them on the backs of the caterpillars. I heard one caterpillar say (once upon a time): “He’s sure taking a long time to die!” I forgive him, he’s long dead now. My brain waves are no longer coming out of his nostrils, he’s more comfortable in death than he was swimming around in my head, I do believe. I think he fell off some cliff, and better for it.
Anyhow, I have this sudden sensation; it is half an inch under my optical lobe; a funny, if not stringy place to be. A wide-eyed reflection: death is like the sound of thunder-I have heard it and felt it, seen it, even endured it within my life time; I have flown around the whole planet, and it comes down to this-I should say, it comes back to this, to an old dirt road and an old attic window (and perhaps alongside of that was a dream, the dream of a pauper; you see, without dreams we remain, but mutts to the world around us…). The starfish of my youth you could say, and how slowly and evenly does this reflection move-develop in: my head, my soul-the spirit that talks to me-you know, that second self-but this starfish has a body of a dinosaur. You see a starfish can be a glacier too. My mind sweeps low and swift over this glacier, now the lamp is lit:
Once upon a time there was a boy, he was no more than twelve years old, he wasn’t at the time real intelligent, but he had good insight, intuition, perhaps foresight too: also he had faith, more than a mustered seed, perchance more than a young man at his age needed; he often sat in his attic bedroom, sitting at the top of the stairs (often writing poetry, trying to figure out the stanza, and so forth),staring out the side window into his backyard-as if into nothingness. There was a big oak tree in front of the pantry, below him-the large oak tree, it extended up past his window, over the house like a giant umbrella-likened to a Titan guarding the house, and alongside the tree were two poles that concocted a clothesline, ropes extending from one end to the other, in rows, he’d often help his mother unravel the bed sheets, stretching them from one corner to the other, putting those wooden clothespins onto the ends of the sheets-snapping them onto the clothesline, and in the middle of the sheets, securing them so the wind wouldn’t blow them to kingdom-come. In the wintertime he’d run out to get those sheets, for his mother, they were like cardboard on the clothesline, nonetheless, it was a task assigned to him, and he’d do it wholeheartedly.
From that very same window, he’d watch the changing of the leaves on the trees-season to season, year after year, (autumn to him was the best of the seasons, or the best part of fall, which was his season, he was an October boy, born on the 7th);and over across his grandfather’s property (where he and his mother and brother lived together-kind of like an extended family type setting)and over across his grandfather’s property, was a large empty lot-once upon a time it had held three other houses, now long gone, perhaps a quarter century long gone-; now, this large space was dense with tall yellow and brown and thorny shrubbery it was hard to walk through, it was home to: rats and mince, quails, and a few pheasants, perhaps a snake or two, grasshoppers and ticks and all those sorts of insects.
After about five-years living there old man Brandt, who lived on the other side of the empty lot, and a few of the neighbourhood boys, got together and cleared out a section of the bared and unfilled lot for a baseball area-a diamond, as it is often referred to-and the young boy he helped by picking up rocks, and cutting those towering weeds with a sickle. That was the boy’s world, one big change in half a decade, but a good change. mushroom chocolate bars