Weaker than Water

"In the world, there is nothing more submissive and weak than water. Yet for attacking that which is hard and strong, nothing can surpass it." –Lao Tzu


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They say I
am going blind,
and I believe them,
because today I
thought I saw the scant
trees rising, frightening
as rodent tails,
from my churning street.

Last week,
I asked why
that blond
girl was riding
in the back
of someone’s old pick-up.
You laughed.
It isn’t a girl you told me.
It’s a golden retriever.

When it isn’t so scary,
I try to smile at these
surreal perceptions
of mine–in the kitchen,
the cracked clay pot
is really a hairy
felt hat,
the antique easel,
I take for a coat rack,
the lace curtains,
I use for towels.

And then somehow,
in the vagueness
limp compensatory fragments
when nothing is as it appears:
outside, ugliness rolls
by like blurs of film noir,
the stiff, gay squirrel
in the busy street
has already disappeared.

Now, in twilight,
the moon outshines the city lights.
My eyes stumble toward the sky,
grab at the skirts of night.
I raise my hands in attempt
to grasp the befuddling universe.

Katherine Gotthardt
Copyright 1995


Author: All Things Writing, LLC

Katherine Gotthardt is CEO of All Things Writing, LLC, a full-service content development and content marketing company. A published writer and seasoned educator, Katherine leads a team of professionals on a mission to make clients shine online and in print.

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