“He Listens to the Radio”

“He Listens to the Radio”

He listens to the radio and contemplates the bridge
That crossed the river he remembers formed the border
Of the town in which he grew and learned the odours
Of the day, the fragrances of weeks and months, the ridge
And rim of years that lined his paths and fixed the seals
On his own parchment. Tonight, another abscissa of whatever dream, an obelus,
The mark he’s worn since first he first noticed that he’s not alone. The bliss,
The buzz and hum of silences and plot lines between the reels
And jigs, adagios and solemn counterpoints
That hold him here until the notes begin anew.
He lights a cigarette, spots a flaw on the counter’s surface. In lieu
Of joy, the music recalled, happiness drifts—the deft denial of the joint
Endeavour of the speaker and his ear as he finds the greater light
In what must come between the lines that holds him dearly in the night.

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