I Wake Up In Despair

I wake up in despair most mornings. Each day
slants uphill and it takes everything to climb it 
with the load I’ve got to bear.

I wake up in despair most mornings
but find comfort in knowing 
things that a Pharaoh can’t know — 

how, for instance, to pick myself up
without an entourage to help me; how in fact
to get by with no entourage, neither in celebration

nor in sorrow; how to fall down back-broken
and get back up again next day for another round
with nothing but what’s in me to pull me up.

I wake in despair most mornings. Each day
bores me — sometimes with a dull drill, sometimes
with a bludgeon of same and same and same again.

I wake in despair most mornings 
but find comfort in knowing
things that a boss can’t know, or has forgotten —

how to do the dirtiest bits of a dozen jobs, for example;
how to take the next step when it’s time, how to 
fix the broken piece, how not to fail

from seven AM to lunch, how to stay awake
from lunch to three PM and longer
if three PM becomes 5 PM or later.

I wake in despair most mornings knowing
how little of my life is open to me, based on
how much time I have to spend recovering from the rest of it.

I wake in despair most mornings
but I can almost get to glee in knowing
what a king does not, what they may never know —

how to run riot in the streets to spite all my aches and pains,
how to run riot in the streets with all the others aching and pained,
how to run riot in the streets knowing how little time I likely have — 

but knowing as well that ahead of me, somewhere
cowering, somewhere hiding behind mere walls, 
a king, a boss, and a Pharaoh are, at last, themselves in despair.

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

2 responses to “I Wake Up In Despair

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