the grind

carborundum on withered flesh: a long day,
and the latest surprise guest is in the lumbar region,
driving pitons into vertebrae to climb the lower spine.

the wrongnesses have been like the plagues of egypt.
monday was spike-headache day, tuesday the closure of left nostril lane,
wednesday the night of the thousand urinations,
thursday noise sensitivity, friday eyeleak, and now
tiny adventurers are scaling the coccyx and points north.

ah, but it is good to be alive.
ah, but it seems to be less good each day.
ah, but there is always a kiss or a good meal just around the corner . . .

childhood saw its maddening chickenpox, its horrible stomachaches,
its flesh-abrading spills and sprains.
in retrospect, it was old age prep:
this hurts. enjoy that the hurt will fade, since you are young.

the old man enjoys
oases of good and painless feeling,
and he hates whining, especially his own,
but sometimes the carborundum wins a fall.

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