MICHAEL HARPER

poet, teacher, et cetera

THE DEMOLLIFICATION OF WAKING

 

Where I come from there are these migratory flocks of fear

 

Sometimes fear is getting up in the morning

Sometimes fear is staying in bed

Sometimes fear is where you come from

Sometimes I do not fear anything and that frightens me

 

So I shut my eyes and fear

when I open my eyes all things will be gone

including my sense of sight & my sense of security

& the cat’s meow in the afternoon

because I was the problem all along

 

I fear tomorrow I will wake up eight years ago and have to do it all again

knowing just as much as I don’t know now

 

My fear builds an altar in the hearts of others

where I learn that the opposite of fear is losing yourself

 

Sometimes I fear when I look in the mirror

so I cover it with a sheet and my fear becomes another ghost

 

I read the news today, oh boy, 

there are train tracks to park your Volkswagen on

and ghost bikes everywhere

and falling asleep in bathtubs

or just not waking up tomorrow

and it’s proven that when someone you love disappears

the phone rings this certain way

 

but I am not afraid of dying

just deaths

 

originally published in MORE SURFACE