Saturday, May 06, 2006


the lost art of wasting time

    putting everything off

    the objectives for the day lean against sagging fences now
    the shovels and hoes are covered in dew
    parking tickets from places barely remembered go
    unpaid another day
    tax forms from years i'm not sure i ever lived
    slip a day closer to being forgotten
    along with letters stamped but never mailed
    their thoughts obsolete - their news old
    lone socks and quarters are hiding out in the dust
    under the bed like the strays that won't go in

    here are the windows i once thought of as dirty
    but that was an old list of things not done
    their dirtiness is relative now
    to the other urgent tasks left undone
    and therefore, not very dirty any more

    may we always have mountains of things that have to be fixed
    acres of the unfinished
    let us hear as long as we can
    the kitchen faucet that drips all day
    with its one inscrutable syllable,
    and let us have joyous screen doors
    with a rip in the corner like this,
    an amusement ride the flies dive through
    while the moon glowers down
    and the stacks of things not done
    grow beautifully deep

    by david tucker, managing editor of the new jersey star ledger, whose new book, late for work was featured on fresh air on May 2.

it's the perfect shabbat afternoon poem...

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