MR. AARON DRAKE (From the book Rabbit in a Box – see Amazon for details.)

MR. AARON DRAKE

The day’s chill winds sifted through spreading cotton threads

spreading threads too gapped to stop the flow of cold

thin stretched they were as the clouds which slipped past overhead

dipped and thinly spread with wisps of changing melting smoke

darkly stained with blemish there swept past in constant moving coolish air

a cold that touched flesh hiding beneath the cotton vest

a vest I knew when left the apartment’s quiet heated pleasant nest

would not be capable of passing the chilling test

to keep warm the flesh hidden as though a bird within a hidden nest

tucked tightly by nature’s parents had somehow unfolded the hiding cloak

and yet somehow pursued, pursued and drifted I went walking in the park

unaware of where or why or what this lonely singular walk might come to bear

the fruit of which was hidden by frost heavy laid upon the still and morning air

not alarmed or aware of where I went or was bound to go, for it was to be simply so,

and go I did and touched gently the patches of remaining ice crusted snow

that somehow had chosen to remain, though without a brain could not entertain

such a thought themselves while in curiosity I was so caught up in mindless wandering that thought perhaps in nature some primal attention might touch the ragged frozen cap which sat like a hat on each small pile of frozen dew,

a dew that through the ages each had recycled as though unique and new

to that time and place and yet man and land, and all that walked, crawled and flew

had known as rocks had before when heated lava pools sent steam upward rising to somehow cool the planet in its early morning rising pains of birth

and as I looked out over the parks twin blue shallow lakes where steam drifted

I sensed the eyes of him I later learned was named Mr. Aaron Drake

who sat and stared out at the lake with water coolish to the touch

where in summer’s dress children waded to the knees, but not one now ventured past the trees where Mr. Aaron Drake sat and silently looked out at the lake,

then spoke to me he did without a word being uttered from lips cold shuttered

he spoke to me from within the cold that lay close that day,

and emanated from his skin at that place on that day in the coolish month of May

and asked if I might draw tight the coat that covered his shirt stained

drying red from where he’d bled that night before the day

and could I please lift the bottle of cheap made gin

one more time to the lips of him who pale had closed most tight

beneath twin eyes that held no light or sight at all

and wished, in kindness, to be propped up a bit so his corpse would not slip and fall,

fall upon the sidewalk that dawning day in a chilling month of May

and so I did as bid then bid farewell to the silent apparition

soundless seated staring out at the twin lakes so silent in there bluish color,

waves lightly lapping, tapping against the man-made shore,

gold fish lazy sleep swimming there just inches from the air above

and went my way for nothing left to do for Mr. Aaron Drake,

nothing left to do for he who had left the earth in violent play the night before the day

and whose rigid corpse would soon be found and so,

I thought, and inward knew, no need there was for me to tend him there

and therefore continued to wander surrounded by the chill air

as the voice behind grew mute, silent, still,

and no longer to the stiffening body did any outer measures matter.

 

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