Because I Am a Good Shot
and Other Poems

Because I Am a Good Shot

I shoot a piece of paper so pale, from far away, it could be an image of me.
After the range, I search for pills in my desk drawer.
I shake each cylinder swollen with tiny gray beads and imagine falling dead asleep.
I am doing my best not to kill myself before I die.
I do not stay alive for me, I stay alive for you.
I do not want to offend you.
Even in my fantasies I care what you think.
You. You. The all-seeing, eye-snapping performance of you.
Another day, Another victory!
Or, so my therapist says. Would that my mind were as easy to silence as hers.
I’m alive despite the constant pounding in my left ear.
I’m alive unlike the cowboy who shot himself in the middle of a field,
the cowboy who could not stand the ringing in his ears.
Would that I were as brave as that cowboy on a morning such as this.
Another day, I wake to the cruel call of blue jays.
Another day, I rent the gun and do not buy it.
Another day, I read my poems and wonder: Where is the world?
Another day, I fall asleep to the dead pounding at my door.
Another day, I cannot find a rock to break.
Another day, I cannot find a break to rock.
Another day, I cannot break these tiny beads into tiny rocks.
Another day, I cannot find. Another day, I cannot.
I cannot. I cannot. I cannot. I cannot. I cannot.

Another’s Living Soul

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