Ode to the pocket planner I probably should have bought for collegelike everyone told me to, but I didn't because I'm lazy and because Ithought I could handle it all in my capacious memory, although inretrospect I shouldn't have put too much faith in a memory that fails torecall things like the birthdays, phone numbers, and names of peopleI'veknown for months, the passwords to very important encrypted files, thedates when I have to mail in vital payments to my debtors or have myorgansremoved by debt collectors, the people I promised to pick up for speechtournaments in high school, and the speech tournaments I promised toattendin college, and many other miscellany, especially when addled by therigorsof college-my first few flings with mama alcohol, the ability to stayup aslate as I want and sleep in as late as I want (if I don't mind missingthatquiz in Chem 111), the mind-numbing effects of a Cleveland atmosphere,andthe sanity-shaking effects of prolonged lack of female attention after afull month of very intense female accompaniment after 18 years ofnothing,then end result of which is that when one sits down to do one'shomework,one instead slips away from reality into a confused state of memory andimagination during which time magically disappears as one staresdreamilyinto space, and over time reality begins to feel less real and youbeing tofeel a separation from where and who you are and you see your ownapproaching mortality and your shaking repetitive-stress-disorder handsandthe way the years evaporate into the abyss but you really don't care andthen one morning you awake to realize how you've been just watching yourlife like a television show, detached, separate, and you're horrifiedwiththe realization that it is all really happening and there's nothing youcando and you don't know how to fix it, so maybe it'd be better just toslipaway into insanity...into nothingness...into escape...all of which onlyhelps you to further forget that five page paper due in your Englishclasslater on that day.
--or--

Those silly Syllabi!

As the professor
Picks up papers - half our grade -
I ask, "What paper?"
 
10-7-98

(a note on the poems with the really long titles)