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by W. Mahlon Purdin

When I have basically nothing to do.

Demons are friends, time is an ally.
Relax and see what happens.
It’s like being in freefall without worry.
It’s like paddling near a shore in inches of water.
No one around. Peaceful solitude.

Not rare but sometimes too far between,
These are days to cherish and relish
Like being underwater at night,
Like being in Providence on skates
Or camping in Maine for the sixth night.

Days of sitting in my chair and choosing
What to do, what to think, and what to write.
Playing my guitar and singing for all its worth.
Of being untuned in the rhythm of life.
Using the dictionary to find meaning.

Drinking cold coffee because the flavor is good.
Leaning back with my hands linked behind my head.
Like listening to the fan and marveling at its utility.
Feeling cold but knowing that the fire will warm the room.
Like having calls come in and not answering them.
Like listening to the rings and appreciating their eloquence.

Of wondering what we’re doing.
The heartaches of wasted suffering
Of ugly competition and avarice
Of charity unbounded
Of peace eluded.

To free one’s mind much is cast aside.
The forest for the trees becomes obvious.
The obvious becomes real.
And truth flows around.
If we allow it.


Posted on 10/31/2013
Copyright © 2023 W. Mahlon Purdin

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 11/01/13 at 03:16 AM

It is enjoyable to read what your mind does when you are laid back. "Like listening to the fan and marveling at its utility." - such a mundane machine yet you make it thought provoking. That last stanza is inviting and caps this poem nicely.

Posted by Philip F De Pinto on 11/01/13 at 12:33 PM

having nothing to do, and netting writing such as this, to marvel at in the lull of times that we are doing something is highly preferable to having bundles of things to do and not coming up with anything in our nets as interesting as this poem.

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