Poetry is not a luxury

A poem inspired by Joy Harjo

Photo by Andreas Wagner on Unsplash

DESP
COMPAR 0.001 REIT
CUSIP 29444U700

“Need the cost basis…”
The accountant’s words
raise fear in me.
They slide off,
find no purchase.
I can’t
grasp them.
They are senseless,
of course.
But more than that.
They hurt, they burn
me.

I have no idea,
of course,
what she’s saying.
I resist knowing.
I resist “language”
such as this.
I guard against it.
I am afraid
of infection.
Is it contagious?
I want to know.

Like my desk,
the desk where I
“go to work,”
to my work-a-day,
salaried job,
the job that has
nothing,
whatever,
to do with me.
I need an
amulet,
a “soft pouch of
corn pollen,”
a medal,
a shield,
something to ward
off the ugly
in life.

The humdrum,
the lifeless,
the scary.
The desk —
I can’t write
there.
I need a second
desk —
one of wood
not glass,
one of softness,
stillness,
patina,
where the sacred
can alight.

A corner of the
universe
designed to
catch the
whispers, a
corner like a
web, a dream
catcher, some
kind of apparatus
that allows
the unspeakable,
unsayable,
ineffable
beauty, pain,
divinity, and magic
of the world
in.

Writer, copywriter, editor, and word lover. Subscribe to my newsletter at christywhite.substack.com

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