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While a Man Fiercely Smokes a Cigarette

The sun is working to burst through Halloween.
A man shuffles his feet, walking anxiously,
but feet not leaving the ground,
walking between errands, perhaps,
he sucks hard and rapidly
on a barely-visible cigarette,
fast, fierce, focused,
as the smoke goes out,
seeking company,

and dirty pirates,
dirty, pirates in sexually-charged
maniacal costumes, so proud, work,
not even a vague distraction,
but worst is all of the red t-shirts,
not for Halloween, but worn
for the monumental event,
for Monday Night Football,
which I confess to planning
on watching while I dole out the cheapest
candy and sneer at all but the youngest
who will ring my door bell,

but now I contemplate,
that man sucking so fiercely
so wildly on that cig, and I think
of all of my sicknesses,
all my addictions,
most the vicious ones, gone,
resting thankfully in that,
chomping, mashing Nicorette
like it’s heroin for my depression,

but the worst one is this sitting,
sitting alone, judging all that I hate,
wondering how it is I could be alive,
and forgetting how fortunate I am,
how full my life is, and tears come,
they roll while I watch the sun
absolutely obliterating Halloween.
I wonder,
how do all these people
get normal,
enjoy their costumes
and evade the hate.

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  1. #1 by Indigo Spider on October 31, 2011 - 9:57 pm

    Another one that has me thinking “get out of my head.” Sat there many times wondering just the same thing — how do all these people get normal

    • #2 by Carl on November 2, 2011 - 10:44 pm

      I am so lucky when I get to get in someone’s head! 🙂

  2. #3 by Carl D'Agostino on October 31, 2011 - 11:33 pm

    They have nothing to evade

    • #4 by Carl on November 2, 2011 - 10:44 pm

      Your world is clean!

  3. #5 by Kay Camden on November 1, 2011 - 9:39 am

    You are a fortress. You don’t need that wall. Open your drawbridge and let those kids in. Even the older ones–some of their jokes are so clever I’m still smiling after I’ve closed the door. Their joy will rub off, and you will go to bed with the lightest heart.

    And I used to have social anxiety panic every time the doorbell would ring on Halloween. I’m not sure how I changed but I’m glad I did. I didn’t know what I was missing.

    • #6 by Carl on November 2, 2011 - 10:45 pm

      This is a very interesting take. I’ve been thinking a lot about your comment.

      • #7 by Kay Camden on November 3, 2011 - 8:56 am

        Well, ugh, so have I. Mainly, “That comment was so condescending and sanctimonious–I need to keep my mouth shut!”

        I don’t know what gets into me sometimes.

        • #8 by Carl on November 5, 2011 - 7:03 am

          You always get points from me for being honest, but I do think I mis-communicated the state of mind when I wrote this.

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