William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Explain Yourself

Open, honest, illuminating, inspiring, heartbreaking, profound — I am glad to have read James Baldwin’s masterfully written essay, “Notes of a Native Son.”

Yesterday morning, upon rising and after the coffee was on, I drank two large glasses of water. This morning I had less than a glass. Sometimes I have one, sometimes one and a half. Day in and day out, all through my growing up years, my father had two, but only after brushing his teeth.

There are days when the body says, “A little less water, please,” or, “Enough. Let us rest without food.” Attention, not habit. No tides are identical, no shoreline remains the same. Breath by breath, a new sky is revealed.

Clean your plate. People are starving. Now it shines like a mirror, as if to say, Explain yourself.

What is your explanation? Or have you made your life a religion?

January 2, 2022


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Categories: New Poems & Pieces

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