The prose poem should not be defined but let be.
– Brooke Horvath
I am looking for an inspiration, a spark, a faint outline of someone or something lurking in the shadow just out of my clear vision. I am looking for a nudge, that tug at the hem of my mind, an ablation of the gentle slope of my cerebral hemisphere where words scattered like windswept petals after a rainstorm. If the sun is God, like someone had told me, I’d pray to her brightness three times a day, kneeling on the lawn, where the dew of the morning soaks the soles of my bare feet, and the heat of a mid summer day bores down my nape. If the sun is Godless like another had claimed, I would turn to the moon, ask for his mercy. How many moonlit Muses had there been? Too many that they have become trinkets, sitting on dusty shelves of poets. Why can’t I have one then?
When I walked under the shadows of trees, I saw nothing but a fluttering of wings. Are you the one? When I asked, it flew further than my night vision. So I picked up the phone and dialed my old lover. His voice held no joy at hearing mine. It held no surprise either as if I were a visitor he’d been dreading all along. Did I leave it? I asked him. Leave what? he retorted. You know, I said. The one who lurks in the shadows and comes out to greet me, to feed me, to watch me eat grapes after grapes until my wrath is gone and my words re-arrange. That one, I told him. Did I leave it?
I knocked on his door and he answered. He seemed dim in the night. God, had he always been this faint of an outline? I wanted to reach out and touch his sleeves to make him solid again. He showed me a picture of his new girl, the one he called Sweet. Good grief! Sweet? You be nice now, he growled. She’s a very decent chick.
I left him and went in search of my inspiration which cannot be found in the mailbox. Letters have ceased these days. No one bothers to write anyone. Two lines are not letters. They are insults to letters. Honesty is dangerous. Everyone is busy talking about his or her new gadgets which is a safe subject. No one ever gets accused of being wicked when she only talks about phone apps. Old words are dying. New words are stillbirths. Pages remain blank. Trees stand bereft. Night after night I go on walks under the moonlight, hoping to catch the sound of night animals squawking in terror.