It's Me on the Line

It's Me On the Line


I don't know who arranged for me to be here.

In fact, I'm not sure what here is.

Or what the hell constitutes me of all people.

I'm not comfortable with the composition of my body.

And I've yet to define soul in my own mind

in a way that explains anything.

Speaking of my mind, it's sated with thoughts

but I can't figure whether it generated them itself

or they were merely installed in there by some third party.

"Nosce te ipsum," so I hear. "Know thyself."

But how can I when we've never been properly introduced?


I've flown over the continent and two oceans besides.

And I look up at the sky without thinking.

So many places I could have been dumped.

But I'm not in Alaska. I'm nowhere near Betelgeuse.

And all those different times.

I could have donned blue, fought in the American Civil war.

Or busted my French aristocratic butt staying out of the guillotine's way.

There's even a whole stretch of future that could have

accommodated me just as easily.

Why now? Is there something about the turn of the 20th century

into the 21st? Or is there nothing about it and that's why it was chosen for me?

Then the priest has to go talk to me of eternity.

And I can't get my skull around expected lifetimes.


I see nothing but possibilities on all sides

but, sadly, none of them are options.

All I know is that I will someday die

and, one lot is saying, it could be good for me

and the other that it's a hole

I can never climb out of.

So which is it to be?

In other words, who am I speaking to?

John Grey

John Grey is an Australian poet, US resident. Recently published in the Tau, Studio One and Columbia Review with work upcoming in Naugatuck River Review, Examined Life Journal and Midwest Quarterly.   









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