46: coma in cantos: canto 6

canto 6

and so I yelled
Aquinas is a fool
or to that effect ambiguous.

walking home
when I entered
my apartment I found
two thieves at work
unraveling, or trying to unravel,
the wires and cords
of the electronic machines
I owned. Later, they told,
we just turned the nob
and voila, easy, smooth,
certain. The components they
had in a portable stack,
but wanted, I learned
later, because they informed me,
the expensive wires and cords,
component cable, HDMI,
also, so the man told me,
as it was a manthief and a womanthief,
hard at work there unthreading,
unlooping, depuzzling
over what looked like the vascular
system of a giant
on the floor.

later, I told them,
I have a friend who demystifies
the stringing of mobile,
wind chime, and other complicated
hanging devices,
and sometimes lazy springs
for children or the hopelessly
nostalgic, for a living
with her fingers and eyes,
a surgeon of hanging things
she is, I told them,
or coiled things–

which brings me to I, finally I
who’s been speaking to you,
you, I who
is one of those strange
you hear about, who,
when I hear about a cause or a skill,
takes a percentage for making
it into capital, a living, as they say,
and not a bad one.
When my friend unwinds a beloved
chime, some twisted mass
of clinking music,
I earn my keep, my apartment,
and my electronics,
whose wires were now
strung out on the floor
by a manthief and womanthief.

In conversation with the thieves,
I let it be known
over beer a certain notion,
related to the unraveling of wires
or string, that in a certain
film a mother gave wisdom to her son
in the form: life is like a box of confections:
you never know what will occur,
just as one may not infer the contents
of a chocolate prior to biting.

which to me is no real wisdom at all
for several reasons: some boxes
of chocolate come with a key
and even more, such a figure
assumes a stuffer of chocolate
boxes who must know the contents
and so the generalization unravels,
and the lover of chocolate may simply
type up a letter before biting
and ask
which is not what life is like.

but this was only
after I entered my apartment
and encountered
what soon became known
as a womanthief and a manthief,
working on their knees,
and the man stood with abruptness
and the woman stopped
her fingers
and the man
pointed to me a gun

and I said:
my father’s deepsleeping
and my mother weeps
for him
and my brother,
for whom I would have given
my skin, was killed by war,
by some nameless combatant,
my brother’s name a mystery to him,
and so if you wish
if it’s necessary
you may shoot me
but you can also depart
without harm from me
with all my entertainments
for I can afford more
I’ll even assist.

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