H e a r t   S o n s   &   H e a r t   D a u g h t e r s   of   A l l e n   G i n s b e r g

N a p a l m   H e a l t h   S p a :   R e p o r t   2 0 1 4 :   A r c h i v e s   E d i t i o n








I have not learned how

to properly balance

the mundane details of life,

the phone bill, the gas bill,

an overdue library book.


A tiny bird hops along

the broken concrete wall

channeling the river.


I am only concerned

with how beautiful things

also must struggle, yet

they show little anxiety

for tomorrow's rent

or appetite for memory.


A wasp fans a nest of mud,

the river sluggishly flows

through a steamy Jersey July,

the hospital expects money.


Where is that peace in which

we can enjoy our modest blessings,

our human troubles, our daily bread,

a sturdy tent & the lovely

presence of children?


I have been asking this question

for six-thousand years.


Forgive these ancient complaints,

for I have chosen a hard chair

as my bleak watchtower,

& in its squeaky springs

I hear the rusty pulley

on my mother's clotheslines

when dandelions were yellow flowers.


I will give them their dollars

enclosed with an ugly silence,

then listen for the thunderstorm

crackling through my radio.



[Originally published in NHS 2004, http://www.poetspath.com/napalm/nhs04/Bob_Rixon.html.]