Aug. 15 - My Year In Lists

by Jason Wardell

I cherish, with fondness, the day before I met you.
--Los Campesinos!, "My Year In Lists"

Top ten
  1. distractions from my apartment,
    which, left to its own devices,
    could consume me whole, steal
    weeks upon weeks, but with added
    distractions, only manages to
    steal hours or the stray, vulnerable

  2. places and activities inexorably
    linked to first fond, then difficult
    memories and the associated days
    when I found out that there are parts
    of this city that are off-limits

  3. books I've finished this year,
    assuming I've reached ten

  4. books I've left unfinished this year,
    assuming I can narrow it down to ten

  5. terms of endearment that are off-limits
    for the forseeable future, again assuming
    I can narrow it down to ten

  6. moments when my mood has hinged
    on some triviality or another,
    such as the absence of gin
    or the inability to remove
    a sticker from a plum

  7. ways I have tried to escape or focus
    my mind, only to realize that
    if today decides on being awful,
    it will be awful, no matter how high
    a score I manage on Japanese Bejeweled

  8. other reasons for squandering
    most of my days at one coffee shop
    or another, though admittedly it's
    more one than the other; see item two

  9. days squandered (at coffee shops or elsewhere)

  10. questions or reassurances I wish
    I could never hear again.
    I'm usually fine.
    I'm eating better and getting out.
    I'm planning my future and waiting for it.
    And I know it's coming.


Author's Note: Title comes from the LC! song that serves as epigraph. Better to be thorough than a plagiarist is what my mother always says.

Posted on 08/15/2010
Copyright © 2021 Jason Wardell

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Charlotte Smith on 08/16/10 at 04:50 AM

A great way to say what we do every day. Don't let any more of your life pass you by! So many years wasted...so many to come. Make the best of them :)

Posted by Meghan Helmich on 11/17/11 at 09:46 PM

I really love the simplicity of the 'removing a sticker from a plum' image. I've been reading a lot of your poems and am thoroughly amazed.

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