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as is

by Lauren Singer

untidy man,
hang up your winter coat.
the weather is warming up, now
and the mosquitoes will peck you with blossoms
if you keep all of those windows unscreened.

we don't have to hide from anything, really.
the disaster already happened,
all we have to do now is loot the leftovers,
wear our tatters like silk and our bodies like
cavernous homes for lost things.

we carry our skin like hurt lockers.
it's okay to want more than this,
but there is something to be said of
just enough.

let's start with the coat.
then we can clear a spot off on the table,
then we can move onto bigger tasks like
programming the coffee pot and
filling up those empty bureau drawers with clothes.


Posted on 06/24/2014
Copyright © 2020 Lauren Singer

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by V. Blake on 06/24/14 at 07:02 PM

I love the way you opened this poem up, but I love the way you close it even better. This is shorter than I am used to seeing from you, I think--interesting to see the economy of language. Also, quick heads up, there is currently a typo in the "it's okay to want more" line.

Posted by George Hoerner on 06/24/14 at 08:05 PM

I wonder what the homeless do with their winter coat, if they have one, once it does warm up? I never thought of that before although I have thought of becoming homeless. Good write lady.

Posted by Jim Benz on 06/24/14 at 10:23 PM

My rarely used VCR is still blinking 12:00 after fifteen years, so I can relate to the situation and the response both. May we all wear our tatters like silk.

Posted by Quentin S Clingerman on 06/25/14 at 04:27 PM

Raise the question when is it tidy enough? A touch of humor with the pathos. ( George lives in an area where it is not too bad to be homeless!)

Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 06/27/14 at 04:58 PM

Loved the "untidy man" line and the mosquitoes pecking with blossoms (how unique!). There is a sense of looking for balance here. I like this very much.

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