Irene Cunningham

November 29, 2012 § Leave a comment

Subject to Requirement

Borrowers are browsers, mostly quiet
with ferrety eyes, heads tilted, scanning
spines looking for the next big thing.

I live on the edge, where two towns meet,
choose, right or left stretch, me in the middle,
in control, and walking distance to two libraries

all week I’ve burrowed into Joe Hill’s Horns
and loved it so much I must borrow more.

I’m all right, Jack but you’re not, not if
you live deep inside with the multitude
or scattered like sheep on hills, buried alive.

How can it be, this measurement between books
and life when space lives inside our heads?
Space needs food, children must venture
and the ancients have habits to keep.

Back in time, I burrowed Blyton’s canon, moved
across the world with Shute; we could be
On the Beach, soon — I hear the death knoll
and the speculation of science fiction.

In a drowned world who would save bankers
or politicians? In the new world they would be
lone sharks, in the wake of the white whale.

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