“Have and Have-nots (for my epitaph)”

In our world of haves
and have-nots,
I am the one who had,
but did not.
I am the one who could have,
but had not.
I am the one who still has,
but I rather not.

Most people would if they could,
but I am happy as waiting,
wadded up potential.
You who are kinetic,
what is your point?
Moving from Station A to Station B,
not remembering any place in between?

If I showed you a Polaroid photo of your childhood,
could you recite the flavor of popsicle on your tongue—
when you first saw your neighbor washing her red Mercedes
in a violet-blue bikini top?
Tropical punch
and the evergreen needles were xeroxed between my toes.
The smell of gasoline rose from the broken down lawnmower
and I had nine mosquitoes feeding on my chest—
whose heart was not yet broke.

In our world of haves,
I am half of what I had
and half of what I never had.
I prefer living—
always with space to fill,
never over the brim;
At least never until
I am ready to be still.

narrative poem written on 01-03-2010 by: on mattkane.com
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