Friday, June 25, 2021

Looking at My Bookcase

I cannot double-click my mouse
to access the contents.
Characters and plots,
pressed hard and coated with dust,
call in muffled voices
like patients at the state asylum.
“We’re alive,” they say.
“Why does no one visit us?”
Only Emily Dickinson remains silent
as she lies in her coffin yet again,
suspecting she has already died.

I sit quietly,
as in the back pew of a church
where the faithful have left for the parish fair,
for Ferris wheels and whirl-a-gigs.
The only search engine is my index finger.
There is no easy access to the cosmos before me,
the sum of all creation having been cast forth
by leaden slug-type
for older brains, older times.

“It is good to be here, Lord,” I say,
echoing Peter’s rapture.
Mystery and awe are fit companions
for a Saturday afternoon transfigured
by the textured feel of a page.

~William Hammett

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