Originally posted 1/19/2013.
I will soon read Borges again.
When I do I will wear dark clothes and glasses,
eat pork on rough bread,
smoke an unending series
of bowls of cheap tobacco from a cheap pipe.
I will soon re-read Joyce
but only in the spring and only upon
completion of the works of Borges.
I shall wear a cloak, if I can locate
a store that sells cloaks. A cloak and
a whiskeyflask cane. A cloak and
thick soled shoes and a whiskeyflask
cane. Yes. I will resume reading
Borges, then Joyce. And after that,
Djuna Barnes; then, Wallace Stevens.
For Barnes and Stevens I will change
to a suit of seersucker, and I will not iron it
ever, even the shirt, even the hems; I will feed
on rumcakes and seedcakes and cupcakes
in public cafes, with my books tucked under my chair.
I will be done with reading
Borges and Joyce and Barnes and Stevens
soon enough. Then I will buy a home
and lie around naked and not read anything
I don’t want to read.
All those trappings I affected!
I must have looked ridiculous. What the hell
was all that about? I will cleanse by dressing in sweats
and reading John Grisham in French
while downing supermarket croissants till I pop.
I won’t care who sees
my wide ass in the library
when I am checking out books on getting ahead in real estate,
and books on Stephen King and Patricia Cornwell:
not their works, mind you;
books about their clothing and diet.
Clothes, it is said,
make the man,
you are what you eat, and maybe
you are what you read.
Well, I don’t want to be anything anymore.
Want to be dumb, anonymous, devoid
of a reading list or its worsening symptoms.
Just gimme a burger, a roll in the hay, a dead sleep
on a dirty mattress. An easy way to vanish.