The Answer

An inclination
of mine that sets me
rolling downhill
more often 
than not
is to begin each day

with a question
and then spend all day
not answering it. 

Not just not answering it,
but fleeing from the work
of answering it,

sometimes through pleasure,
sometimes through wallowing
in agony or what to me feels like
agony — it would likely
resemble simple irritation to you,

but then again, 
you’d probably just
answer the question
off the top of your head
when it first came up
and get on with living.

We are inclined differently — 
you toward the ascent, me
facing the other way. It’s not
a moral failing

but it is a failing, a hole
deep in my metal
that you can’t see, a hole 
that will crack open
and break me someday
when at last I collide

with the bottom of the drop.

On that day I will be unsurprised
and frankly disappointed
if you do anything 
beyond social tears
and a shrug 
to see me off;
if on that day you break

because of my breaking
and you don’t 
quickly heal,
that will mean I was wrong

about everything,
about all of it, it will mean

that I should have faced those questions
with the first answer
I could come up with
whether it was wrong or not,
and then gotten on with living

as if I was right.

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About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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