“Certainly Valsartan” by Caley O’Dwyer

Was postmodern living really so bad
with its postmodern lampshades, 
access to the worldwide internet’s
daft shenanigans, the great show
of hip hop, happiness, high-risk mortgages,
fields of discourse plowed 
with ultimate unassailable truth? 
You are a thread in the fabric
while the needle behind you weaves
or is woven into the greater piece. 
Time has a way of doing the dishes,
the throbbing insect about to pop
in the heat, it is you. Don’t bust 
too soon, there is much to see, 
much left of you though you 
are bothered by it, this branching out
of options, river ways into plangent,  
brilliant light where intention flows.                               
You have your plans but the world
was not made for it. There is sense,
gladly, no matter that it isn’t exact,
it is sincere (sometimes) and you are 
OK with that, or not, and time goes on. 
Either way you are reclining on a sofa
for a moment thinking of all this 
in a body that is aroused with grief
for all the things you could have been
or done, loving that you are as you are, 
pretty excited about what’s next, 
avoiding congestive heart failure,
all these minutes in the serene light
in the backend of day, reading a book,
wondering what you’ll have for dinner
later this evening, this very evening on Earth.

Caley O’Dwyer’s poems have appeared in AMERICAN POETRY REVIEW, ALASKA QUARTERLY REVIEW, PRAIRIE SCHOONER, CREAM CITY REVIEW, ZOCALO PUBLIC SQUARE and other venues. He is a three-time nominee for the Pushcart Prize and has received the Academy of American Poets University Prize, as well as a Helene Wurlitzer grant for poetry. A painter and psychotherapist in private practice, Caley teaches creative writing and clinical psychology at Antioch University Los Angeles. His first book, FULL NOVA, was published by Orchises Press in 2001. Other examples of his work can be found at caleyodwyer.com

Author photo courtesy of Audrey Mandelbaum.

Featured Photo by Marianne Krohn on Unsplash