Poem: Claustrophobic

claustrophobic

Claustrophobic

And every time I empty,
the tides bring it back again,
the flotsam.

Treasures
of another age.
Another identity.
Held in escrow for others,
A warehouse. A museum,
every item with a story,
with a history,
some of it yours.
More of it belonging to others
who matter more to you
than you.

And so you live,
claustrophobic.
Not unhappy, mind you.
far from unhappy.
but too often leaving,
just to find empty air
and breathe in the new,
antioxidants
for the soul.

About this poem

If left to my own devices, I’d be that guy who sold everything to go live in a shack on the beach somewhere, or a room in Venice. I’d spend my mornings in cafes writing poetry,  my afternoons painting on the street and my nights with the woman I love.

Fortunately, I am too responsible. I am, for better and worse, my mother’s son. The furniture and family artifacts my kids want when they find homes are safe. But know this -‘That Guy” is always just under the surface.

The picture was taken at Mass MoCA, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. Despite the putrid green mid-century modern chairs, I adore the space. And the drawing of space is brilliant.

Tom

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