William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

What Are They?

The body at work — its processes humming, oxygen, the brain, the blood, the ebb and flow of star matter, day and night, moon shadows, waterfalls — and somehow, from somewhere deep in the tickled tissue and folds, there arises the familiar notion that I am bothered or inconvenienced, that I am in pain, that I am unfairly punished, that I am ennobled, to the point of addiction, the crutch and drug of self — as real as any fiction, dream, or scent on the breeze, unidentified as matter and impossible to find in the grave — and which yet, when understood as meddlesome force and passing thing, immediately weakens and fades — what then are physical and mental pain, when there is no saint, no criminal, no failure to name them, no sinner, no hero, no judge? They are history, lesson, and guide. In a word, they are love.

Categories: Everything and Nothing, New Poems & Pieces

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