“Seeking Solace”

“Seeking Solace”

Seeking solace in the subway’s plastic platitudes, I surmise
An early death and probabilities that all there is is timely. Signs are rife
With squawking cell phones,  stifling squadrons of flies and gnats consigned to fill the gaps, to circumscribe the flock; their unsuspecting victims arrive in time
To read the endless blur of burrow walls that pause for stations only; rumours then, of course, but certain and solidified as petrels fly
By aimlessly along the Green Line markiing obsolescent ends
In the beginnings of the day. They gather, confirmed and reassured
Here and there that no one rides to measure
Worth and distances in terms of métro signs and buskers’ stipends
Yet I clearly heard today the sound of earphones braying,
Gather and surmise,
Repent! The End is nigh, and all pneumatic trails point to promises that do not die but lead all living mothers here to wail”
Had I loitered one more mile along that lethal middle rail,
I surely would have witnessed what I sometime knew, that clouds
Of youth and smoke of elders’ ozone cannot read the billboard omens
scribbled randomly across the métro seats and tiles,
That here below all testimony fades before the printer’s ink has dried.

2 responses to ““Seeking Solace”

  1. Again, I love reading this poem,even though it’s “meaning” is mostly opaque…

    • Yes, indeed! I noticed on your blog a question concerning whether some writers write about their own peculiars, their own locations, or the world as they see it entirely from wherever they happen to be notwithstanding the notion that one’s view in any portion of this planet “seems” to be universal when in fact, it is not; at the same time, what one human being is capable of perceiving means that all humanity, itself, therefore is capable of perceiving whatever that thing is if afforded the possibility of the same experience or exposure to the same venue. Nevertheless, it is possible to render one’s own work and point of view entirely too obscure at the expense of any possibility of comprehension to anyone who has not experienced life as one sees it in the poet’s location. This poem is just so. At times, I have resisted the risk of rendering whatever I write impotent and disqualified under the heading “Too Obscure” simply because the experience may be beyond the bailiwick of most readers, but notwithstanding this obvious deficiency, still stands as the record of a valid experience. Along the same lines, I have the feeling that I will never actually have the experience of making that longed-for pilgrimage to Haifa, but it does not mean that Haifa and ‘Akká’ or, for that matter, any of the actual scenes and settings of the Centres of the Faith do not actually exist.

      Unless the reader has experienced the “Green Line” of the Montréal Métro, I suppose this sonnet is rendered entirely obscure and possibly beyond comprehension. Of course, there is something familiar and entirely common to all subway systems; not everyone, however, uses a subway, or even a bus, and for these souls who do not, of course, the feeling of the experience of such a thing is entirely limited. I often wonder what anyone makes of poetry or narratives concerning the almost prison-like aspect of “being in love” if they, themselves have never had the experience, and , by the same token, I often wonder what people who have no faith and appear to have not an ounce of certitude think whenever I use either word. Frequently, then, if not usually always I read the experiences of my fellow creatures with the same thought you expressed which is that , “Again, I love reading this poem,even though it’s “meaning” is mostly opaque…”

      Actually, I reread the poem and discovered that in fact I had not really finished it. I have revised it; perhaps, it is not so “obscure” now.

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