Toner on paper, but notes, or incapable type?
In the key of tonic metaphor,
minor allegio at anaphora,
blank verse in four-four time.

Do the harmonic accents still ring true,
when your retina xerox’s these inky notes,
and, when alone,
your personal virtuoso sits fumbling expertly at the keys,

playing a heartfelt recitation of concealment?
They must sound, to you, like feathers drowning on the page,
caesura birds…     …singing,
a rain-drenched sparrow,

soggy, screaming in the lines.
Or in the voice?
Or in the ethereal mechanical space
built between black printer toner

and a bright ream of paper,
the flammable medium of the mind?

The margin of impasse built between the keys,
the vanishing pencil marks perspective,
times new roman,
an unwanted page…

Can you see it in the empty rests,


In the line breaks,

the impasse,

you, me, the margin forever between?
For my part in this literary burlesque,
is not the role of Emcee,
I will not sing a bawdy “wilkommen,”

or shout in welcome, “Bienvenue!”
My role is the wretched virtuoso,
playing my black bars, squiggles, and curves,
| ~ &

playing my unscorable music,
building my epitaph in your mind.

Played long after my virtuoso’s final bow,
this liminal music will be heard,
played not-quite-well in that midsummer’s forest,
but every loop of memory’s Carnegie hall

played… remembered.
Somehow makes this flawed,
haphazard flock of
scribbled notes

more perfect,
played better
by a virtuoso,
played better

at home alone,
played better
than before.

I stare away,
there’s too much room in the margins,
I stare away,
at the horizon on my fingertips,

I stare away,
at the rubber-backed keys.

I Wonder if my discordant harmony,
in the callused hands of your virtuoso,
can bring down the bullet-proof barrier
between my squiggled symbols,

–times new roman–
my fragile hands,
and your Other-mind.

I hope too much,
a fatal, yet invisible wound.
Hope, the heart-shaped arrow,
the last flimsy bastion of the damned…

…but, maybe I’ll inspire a standing ovation?
A sombre ovation? A meagre ovation of one?

I play,
you read,
but how can
any Other play,

the keys
my mind?