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Poem: Maps

Nick worked in education teaching writing to recovering addicts and 7th graders. In his spare time, he plays drums for a psych rock trio.

The preoccupied mind

The preoccupied mind


Every fingerprint is a labyrinth,
an ancient design disintegrating
with each moment of friction.
No fault of its own.

The body is a victim of time and fear,
masquerading as consciousness:
the controls set to fight or flight:
the controls set to preoccupy.

The mind is a victim of thoughtlessness.
kings, determined that you forget about the wind
in your lungs, the golden specks that spark
the eulogy of stardust in your neurons.

We call this imagination. But the kings have led us
into this cave, where there is only more cave:
the colorless abyss, a blinded construct of spikes
and echoes they called History:

any excuse to say cooperation is unthinkable.
As I stand, here, I am trillions of cells
cooperating—to clench a fist—
and trillions cooperating to stop it.

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