Poetry

I'm Not Going to Clean My Room Anymore
by Ron Alexander

I’m not going to clean my room anymore.

I’m not going to clean the house.
It’s a waste of time
to wash clothes and dishes

when tomorrow they’ll just be soiled again.
I have better things to do.
I have appointments To miss
and people to flee.

I have worries to ruminate over and over and
over and a computer to keep
on life support.
I have an overgrown garden that demands ignoring,
a faithful lover who requires avoiding,
petulant gods that must be denied
and two demanding
calicos that tolerate none of the above.

To procrastinate, to do it well
takes effort and commitment.
To put off the essential,
to focus on the inconsequential
is an art not lost on me.
But I will excel.
I will decide not to decide,
and pursue the life I was born to live.

I will spare my heirs the burden
of a long obituary,
too many accomplishments to list.
I will leave this life undone, unnoticed,
unaccomplished at the meanest
tasks and enter eternity peacefully,
blissfully laid out in my sleek
stainless steel coffin.

Mourners will ask, “Did he ever finish
anything? that novel?
that poem?
that sentence?”
Devotees will find inspiration in the works
I never produced,
the autobiography unwritten
and I will pass into oblivion except, perhaps,
in the heartless ruminations
of those damned cats.

© 2011 Ron Alexander, originally published in 20 Years of A&U, an anthology of writing by people affected by HIV and AIDS, (Black Lawrence Press)

Ron is a mostly retired psychologist, long-term AIDS survivor, and a celebrated poet who lives in Santa Barbara with his partner Gary R. White. Ron contributes to Santa Barbara Literary Journal as the Poetry Baron, SB Lit Jo's ambassador to both Santa Barbara and the larger poetry communities. You can find the first volume of SB Lit Jo on Amazon here.

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