It’s easy to be a monk on a mountaintop. Or a penitent in prison. Or a travelogist on that long, lonely road to the interior. Basho said, “every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home.” But what if home is in lockdown and each journey, a misprision?
Early summer sun griddles the roof two feet from my forehead. The air conditioner clicks over and rattles until my ears ring in time with it. The water treatment plant to the north farts fumes until the wind itself breaks. Televisions gong and gasp and punch and pundit my brains to pudding. Something under or around my skull stretches and kicks and creaks to escape until my eyes push out against their lids.
Every prison’s got cellmates, some you love and some you hate, some mad as Bess o’ Bedlam whose music shall be a groan. In Sonnet 133, Shakespeare wanted to take a bullet for the one he loved – “Prison my heart in thy steel bosom’s ward” – but a bullet in the heart’ll kill the one you love.
And every prison’s got a warden who holds the key and says with a smile I hope you like it here, it’s gonna be your home, for ninety-nine and a year.
Have mercy on me please.” And that’s about as likely as tears in the eyes of fishes
……………eating dried chickpeas
……………in time with each step –
……………I’m sated with miles
Posted for dVerse poets pub’s Haibun Monday 4/27/20: A Portrait of Two Masters posted by Frank J. Tassone