There was a girl at a counter
with her back to you, you made a noise.
She turned to face you and made
a different noise. You made more noises
with a lifted tone at the end. She stared,
dull-eyed and silent. You repeated your noises
for the desired effect, you even rubbed your hands together
to show her you meant business. She shook her head
in confusion, you wanted to cry.
Another girl overheard the noises. She came over
and made the same noise you had made.
The dull girl lit up and pointed to your answer.
You wanted to punch her dullness away,
like a scientist, you say,
punching only increases dullness.
You're trying to recreate everything
on microscopic levels, you think
if you punch the air fast enough
you might hear tiny sonic booms
but your elbows start to ache just thinking about
the empty locker next to yours and
a wispy boy named [hay-SOOS]
who no one could save
despite his chosen name and the drowning reality
that you'll never punch fast enough
to travel far back enough
or breathe deep enough
to feel strong enough.
When you think of absurdity, you think
of the time clock, man's most insidious invention
of man pretending
he can stamp out another man's presence
on some thing, a degree
of mutual belief that time is made up
of digits and gizmos
forgetting the shadows, crawling
low and slowly along curved lines
you want to punch your time
over and over whispering
I was here
and now I'm not,
here and now