Monday, April 12, 2010

A Leap onto the Poetry Bus


Unresponsive


She was a bovine whiner found comatose in a messed-up apartment.
He was a morose engineer who knocked on her door.
In duty, he did it, at the behest of a mutual friend.
When he found her unresponsive, he did not apply
his bearlike shoulders to the door, but calmly called the paramedics
and tried to leave. They made him stay. So he went to the manager’s
and asked for the key. Together they waited for the ambulance.
The manager surveyed the disaster with greedy eyes
The pill bottles and pills scattered across the filthy counter
The faint shape with hillocks for breasts in a dirty white T-shirt
Lolling on the blue recliner chair, all of which surely
Would eat up the cleaning deposit. The engineer
Contemplated his waiting work in the middle distance.
It was all that he knew.
She complained about everything, the manager informed him.
Who would have thought she’d have any friends to miss her?
The engineer intercepted the emergency team when they arrived.
He gave them the number of the friend to call.
He said he had nothing whatsoever to offer, and they agreed.
Then he mounted his pickup and drove quickly away.


~.~.~.~.~.~


Good Luck Lantern by Sarah Winkler
TFE's Poetry Bus is on world tour today. Catch a ride here. Some of my readers have expressed dismay about this story. Our assignment was to use numerology to choose two people on a phone list and then choose a word in today's email box. I can't explain why I put these two people together in such a situation. They're likable souls, very much alive. The word "unresponsive" came out of an email about my own mother, who is also very much alive. The situation happened to me.
____

21 comments:

Poetikat said...

Ooh - how sad and unfortunate and yet you managed deftly to repulse me as well.
Good work! (This will stay in mind, for sure.)

Kat

Argent said...

Wow! Gritty! "Who would have thought she’d have any friends to miss her?". It's amazing how even the most unappealing human cans till have friends. this has the ring of a true story about it.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Sad and desolate and cold and empty and brilliantly conveyed, really paints an atmospher as well as a picture. Great stuff and different, likes it mucho does I!

Alan Burnett said...

What an interesting idea, expertly converted into an interesting poem.

~L said...

very cool poem. I like riding your bus. Thank you.
~L

Gabriella Moonlight said...

Wow!!! This was incredibly powerful poetry and sharing...I think that the woman you wrote about was my mother and the engineer all those who didn't claim her friendship after she died. Very evocative for me...obivously.

Thank you.

Niamh B said...

With mutual friends like that - who needs enemies?! A surreal take! Thanks for taking part

Syd said...

What a sad state for society. No responsibility to ourselves or to another.

Magpie said...

Wow...it's sad when we so isolate ourselves that something like this can happen. You have such a lovely skill with words...

"She was a bovine whiner found comatose in a messed-up apartment."

Monkey Man said...

Whoa. Sadly, this scene is repeated daily in cities across the US. Evil addictions and sad depression.

Brian Miller said...

wow. i am not even sure what to say to that one...a rather desolate scene...

TechnoBabe said...

Isolated, depressed. Not a good way to live or die, is it?

Titus said...

Wow EO, for some reason I was so not expecting that first line. It's not that I knew what to expect, obviously, but somehow it just caught me completely sideways. Brilliant opening, and in truth the rest did not let it down. A rending piece of work.

crazyfieldmouse said...

this is a hard poem to take in, says stuff we don't like to acknowledge about human beings, and one's own ambivalence about strangers. I can really feel his irritation at the situation he has found himself caught up with. quite dark.
thanks for sharing
cfm

Kim A. said...

You weave a sad story..but in such a gentle way...

♥namaste♥

Karen said...

Wow, Chris! What a sad story - the disinterested (and seemingly uninterested) engineer and the dead whiner. No sympathy for either, yet I'm sorry for both.

Mama Zen said...

Wow!

Judy Sheldon-Walker said...

How sad.

Peter Goulding said...

Stark and uncompromising. I'd probably have called to the manager for the key before calling the paramedics but I'd definitely have been thinking about work in the middle distance too. Well crafted...

little hat said...

I found this sad but very real.It happens daily but is mostly ahidden part of our world. You gave it a kind of beauty.

RNSANE said...

This does paint a very sad picture but, even those you'd least suspect, do have people who care, families who still love them - and even friends among their own numbers.

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