bars at your back,
and their stripes
into one's field of vision.
so much so,
that you feel they're
a ubiquitous feature
of the world beyond.
the cage should be a hated place,
but one can grow to love the cage.
the cage is shelter.
the cage is delivery address
for food & water disbursements.
the cage forms rollbars --
like on a dune buggy --
protection in the event
of a sudden & unexpected crash.
the cage offers one a range --
narrow as it might be --
of distances at which one's captor
may be kept,
and, as long as the cage is shut,
that gives one a delightful
illusion of control.
what a hated place a cage should be,
and yet how conflicted are the captives?
Wandering through a new city,
I come upon a bridge:
its rails loaded with locks.
They call them "love locks."
It gets me wondering how many locks
long outlived the love they memorialized?
How many were lust locks --
linked to the bridge before
the couple really knew each other's
How many were like ill-advised back tattoos,
a lover's name - someone one met in Vegas -
and whose name one wouldn't
were it not inked across one's spine
in a 120-point flame-festooned font?
Seven Sages were spared the sickness
of perceiving the possibility of perfection,
a "perception" of the patently impossible --
in truth, just dim and flimsy imaginings of mind,
and, so, they didn't mind the inevitable
flaws of the human world.
language is liquid;
in the long-run,
meanings are meaningless,
untethered and adrift
in an ocean of possibility.
[political words' meanings
don't drift, but tumble with
whiplash violence through
a desert of the possible.
But, predictably, the first variation
of a political word is the exact
opposite of its original meaning.]