Overloading the Machine

Breathing Down Our Door

Put some elbow grease into it;
another bulb has burned.
We need a bright new twist.

Listen, I am not a white rope-blanket to scale your windows,
nor am I a mud-puddle to remove your heels.
You are side-tracking your way off the trick on this table,
right when I have a good hand to play out, royalty on this wat'ry green.

"Mein Freund," she replied (now is when she folds up for the winter),
"stay cool."

"Kein Problem." One nutra-sweet roll in the Valentine's Day snow.

Warm, inhaling the candle's rhythm, they—I wonder who—dance like you
for attention, for my craving to know one night what shapes this room takes
after they melt, for the one night we'll go too far. I wouldn't do that
if I were you, and I wouldn't do it for you, with you or against you,
because, all traditions aside,

you're a fool in my opinion. But you've beaten me around the bush by
puffing that smoke and shining those mirrors. My advice:
If you see him again in that ridiculous getup,
suggest another time or no change at all.

This empty dance floor—nobody will move at this rate their icy glasses
will continue to tilt, spin, laugh crooked. What's left,
one might say, are Caucasians spilling:
I snagged a dragon, the clock stopped in the coffee shop,
the Bushes surreptitiously took all the chairs,
the squirrels roamed a ditch.

To err was to be there, at that time, at all wound-up about
the red warning wrapping the ribbon up into a better shape,
in fact an original take-me-home, charioteering through a hail of stones
and the mighty nerves of beaker-eyes.

Pronounce at best, "[I]t's history"—ours. We spent
some time and much money at the fitting,
but our baggy cuffs remained, and noone was polite
or even poor afterwards. Still, I require continuous service, right away,
so ring the bell—the past will barrel around the curve and slow

for me to gawk as gently as
back there you were great
your walk in the bar
the total real on
the flickering tape:






This page was last modified on 2011 December 20. "Breathing Down Our Door" by John Sullivan is Copyright ©2003 - 2011, and licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.