Tag Archives: guilt

What Now

I’ve got that heavy knot in my gut

telling me I fucked up, I know it,

everyone knows it, but

I don’t know what I did.

I can’t remember. All I have

is that feeling, something trying

to crawl up from my intestines

and hang from my vocal cords,

choking back a mystery apology.

 

You’re so good at telling me

everything I’ve done wrong.

Tell me now. Tell me

so I can go nine rounds with myself,

get my slacker ass on the ropes

and go for the KO, slam this

imperfection from my system.

 

Tell me so I’m not forced to

waterboard my memory

for false confessions and

agonizing half-thoughts

sputtered out between

cracked lips and

another vodka-rocks.

 

Shuffle my neurons and

find some plausible lie

to explain this writhing,

heavy-as-a-dying-star

sickness in my stomach.

I’m sure you’ll be right.

 

Day 10

Hi. My name is, um, Joe.

Not really, but I mean,

it might as well be,

anonymous and all.

 

I don’t really know

what I’m doing, but

I feel like I should talk

tonight, be open

or whatever. I was

 

so fucking pissed,

so wound up and…

I mean, I don’t need

to tell you. You all

saw. But now

 

I’m exhausted. Steamrolled.

All that tension made me

too tired to be angry, too drained

to drink. That’s never been a thing—

too tired to drink. I don’t know

what to do with myself, with

other people, with all this time.

 

Fuck, I’m sorry, this

isn’t going anywhere.

Never mind. Go to

the next guy. No,

really, pretend I didn’t

waste your time.

I’m sorry.

Day 7

Friday night.  Everyone’s at Happy Hour.

They better be my goddamn friends again

in three months.  All we do together is drink

and play Smash Brothers, and no way I’m

picking up a controller with the rest of them

belching beer in my sober face.  They’re

a bitch to hang around when I’m shitfaced,

can’t imagine how obnoxious they’d be now.

 

Fucking amateurs, still keep tequila in the freezer.

Don’t even know how to get drunk right.  Why

am I hanging out with a bunch of kids anyway?

Not kids kids, but barely-legal-to-drink kids.

 

Better question: why the fuck am I home

by myself on a Friday night?  After 27 years,

you’d think I’d land myself somewhere

better than this.  Steph might still be up.

I can’t handle that tonight, though,

can’t take the just-friends-and-occasional-

drunken-fuck charade.  Why she took so long

to bail is beyond me.  I guess I could call

my brother, but then I’d be with an actual

kid, a sixteen year-old, and how pathetic

is that?

 

No, I’ll stay in tonight.  Alone.

 

Thinking about everyone else is

such a fucking pain in the ass.