You told me tales back then
of gallantry, when noble men and women
met good ends invariably, and all the pain
plainly went to other creatures foul. And I,
I would fain believe those tales you told
of old.

But these days,
all is upside-down absurdity. And every tender phrase
you sang to me has faded to a whisper: echoes
of the love that once had been my home. I suppose,
it always goes like this.

Shattered ramparts, moneylenders in the tempest while
good men die like dogs.
No,
they die like horses. Horses never die well, no matter how well
you love them.

The 1:05 train to anywhere. My back is aching half as much as my
heart while I race on rails to make it home in time for . . .
. . . Dostoevsky sits across from me, barely taped together
with Smerdyakov playing guitar upon his cover.
I cut my finger on his wrinkles as I
opened up that sacred Russian text.

Dysphoria settles down beside me, the devil’s on my right,
and fingers running through that wretched scraggly beard
of his, Fyodor looks at me with harrowed kindly eyes.
It’s been such a long semester,
and now you’re dead, and all I want is peace and quiet.
Let me eat, let me sleep, and even let me sin until
I get bored of its fetid taste.

A man who would be good walks in
and sadly steals a kiss
before I fall asleep, begging him to leave me all alone.
Little does he know, I think,
in a world so absurdly vast and dark
I’m a tad bit tired now,
and I just want
my mother
back.