Ben Harper is on the radio. It’s the afternoon, I’m drinking coffee, and oh, it’s the perfect time for a poem:
Six Billion People
And all of you so beautiful
I want to bring you home with me
to sit close on the couch.
My invitation inserted in six billion bottles,
corked with bark from the final forest
and dropped in the ocean of my longing.
We would speak the language of no words,
pass the jug of our drunken joy
at being babies growing into death.
Sometimes, I know, life is stupid, pointless,
beside the point, but here’s the point —
maybe we would fall
in love, settle down together,
share the wine, the bills,
the last of the oxygen and the remote.
It’s my mother’s birthday today, one of those events I always dread. Too many histories, too many explanations, too many pasts. Hardly fitting for this page. And since I’m still on a Chandler high, here, another poem. What could be more apt?
How beautiful the sun as it skims
across the air in the hush of ten degrees,
disc of palest yellow hope along a sky
of circumstance; how beautifully we watch it fall,
the random tern, forgotten mole,
the infant tree inside rough winter bark.
How beautiful this frost, female fingers
tracing down the glass, how beautiful
this world too cold to criticize itself;
how beautiful Earth’s creatures are, happy
and forever safe from the only perfect tragedy,
which is of course to never have been born.