maybe it was always glass

slowly my fingers unroll from my fist

one by one, I count to ten, my breathing coming easier with each finger.

the system and I have been together for 29 years

a new book, a hard problem, a debate

understanding how the system moves and flows

where to push and where to follow

my favorite game was always to avoid the sharp bits

the parts that would catch and end in my unravelling

once i missed 45 of 90 days of a class in a term

i cried

i was given a B.

ten years later i stood in a different place

inside, with useless tools

a hammer, sometimes

a chisel

hitting, carefully or not

always trying, rarely denting

pounding at the unjust cogs

right is confusing and wrong?

i am so often wrong.

stings a little. sometimes a lot.

my personal eradication of public waterworks, tears no longer weapons

rivers of frustration flood my home

and now

the system, so indestructible

come hammer, come chisel, come bulldozer, and even cement trucks

it had stood so tall, replicating itself.

harm, over harm, over harm, over harm.

now, it stands still, looks more and more as though it has always been


shatterable with one small hard stone

one two three four five six seven eight nine ten


with the system still

voices come through




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