Stockholm Syndrome

  1. In the beginning, my eyes were angled
  2.    out a window on a point providing
  3. conclusion while periodic vibrations
  4.    of fear aggressively governed
  5. my anatomy. There were others
  6.    kept ignorant of the latitude of this
  7. municipality, the river’s proper name
  8.    and its source in a local mountain.
  9. It’s important this isn’t construed as
  10.    a sales pitch, just a sensible presentation
  11. of the future, sealed as it is in caskets
  12.    like some distant city encircled by
  13. horned predators. Don’t wish the dead
  14.    are not, they are. It’s easier to close
  15. your eyes, conclude we earn equal reward,
  16.    partial, or none, as there aren’t 30 lives
  17.    to expend or we would have reclined
  18. on premium memory foam awaiting
  19.    the 29th. In the beginning, day
  20. effortlessly transported an invisible
  21.    thread connecting vagueness to a gray
  22. light fading. Please believe me it is
  23.    in your interest to bend your head
  24. as a diversion to eye contact, small
  25.    talk in the off hours of private enterprise.
  26. I feel I must reiterate there were others,
  27.    our eyes all averted out the window
  28. while the sun’s procedure diminished
  29.    words on book spines—a third of them
  30. persisted in the shadows like heirlooms
  31.    in a vacant room. My head was bent
  32. was always bent, a diversion to blame
  33.    and consequence—knowing that if
  34. one rises for any occasion, one
  35.    generally finds oneself further along
  36. the mountain path accompanied by
  37.    functionaries, clerks, and stand-ins
  38. with their dogmatic attachment to doubt,
  39.    fault-finding, or the reveries regarding
  40. transfers to a more temperate time zone.
  41.    I won’t account for their pilgrimages
  42. plotted, embarked on, or satisfied.
  43.    I will only say some ventured outdoors
  44. and could not return. The vast majority
  45.    found relief in voices acting as a proxy
  46. to stars, to evening’s arrival predicted
  47.    as a literal tilting away. I should
  48. remark there were plotlines, instances
  49.    of false contentment, and misadventures
  50. contributing to this particular state,
  51.    which found a corollary in late autumn
  52. foliage placed in a vase on a table
  53.    to better contemplate the color
  54. from the couch. It failed to entertain
  55.    or actively dispense with sorrows
  56. or worse the lack thereof. Take today,
  57.    ceiling fan and grey tiles, this interior
  58. humming is a scheme justifying
  59.    deactivation. At random I lay my
  60. hand on the volume required to fact-check
  61.    the forthcoming treatise Six Million
  62. Ways to Die. It might be easier to say
  63.    fortune is a form of alarm-mongering,
  64. that even the clouds composing sunset
  65.    beyond the peaks do so with freewill,
  66. shaped as nothing a hand could shape.
  67.    I’m beginning to lose my interest.
  68. I’m trying to say it with feeling: Every
  69.    person I love is here. Those who
  70. elected to leave, can’t stay.