hey ninteen: august pieces

Poem: Mailboxes in Late Winter by Jeffrey Harrison

It’s a motley lot. A few still stand
at attention like sentries at the ends
of their driveways, but more lean
askance as if they’d just received a blow
to the head, and in fact they’ve received
many, all winter, from jets of wet snow
shooting off the curved, tapered blade
of the plow. Some look wobbly, cocked
at oddball angles or slumping forlornly
on precariously listing posts. One box
bows steeply forward, as if in disgrace, its door 
lolling sideways, unhinged. Others are dented, 
battered, streaked with rust, bandaged in duct tape,
crisscrossed with clothesline or bungee cords.
A few lie abashed in remnants of the very snow 
that knocked them from their perches.
Another is wedged in the crook of a tree
like a birdhouse, its post shattered nearby.
I almost feel sorry for them, worn out
by the long winter, off-kilter, not knowing
what hit them, trying to hold themselves
together, as they wait for news from spring.

Thought: Every Love Story

“Every love story ultimately ends in some type of loss. Worst case scenario: they betray your trust, have a secret affair, contract an incurable sexually transmitted disease, infect you, and your marriage crumbles apart in a fiery blaze of agony. Best case scenario: you spend many happy decades together and then eventually you watch your sweetheart wither and die. Either way, loss. Either way, grief. Either way, some flavor of heartbreak. Every romantic relationship has an expiration date. It’s not "will it end?" but "how?" and "when?" Just like they say in the musical Hadestown: "It's a sad song. But we sing it anyway." Why do we keep singing? Why do we keep loving and loving, knowing that pain is inevitable? Because, despite everything, I guess, I think...it's still worth it. (At least, that's what my mom tells me. And she's very wise.)” - from Alexandra Franzen’s newsletter.

Song: The Breeze by Bill Callahan