Friday, February 13, 2009

The Interview

Today I spoke with The End of the World.
An imposing sort of fellow;
he was shorter than expected, had a tendency to twitch a tad
every time the conversation turned to what comes after.
We sat at a corner table near the window.
The waitress brought us coffee,
but every time he reached for his, he started talking,
set it down and never even touched a drop;
it may have been a clever rouse, this java-use persona.

It was an occasion more noteworthy than significant.
I thought I asked more questions, but in retrospect, suspect
I answered more than he.
The exchanges:
amiable, casual, then quick, short and patently blunt,
created a river of words, smoothly flowing, sudden rapids,
then languishing pools of thoughts and phrases.
And so the time flew relatively quickly by;
as if it mattered to The End of the World.
One item I found fairly odd, as much as disconcerting,
was what appeared to simply be
a subtle lack of knowledge for someone so appointed.
Impostor-riddled doubts crossed, re-crossed my mind
then chased themselves back into their hidden crevices.

Afterwards, I sat a spell reflecting on the minutes passed;
searching for the merits of this surreal visitation.
Tree-sap slow, time oozed by as I mulled over,

recalled and probed my stubborn memory,
fighting to regurgitate a few more crumbs to chew.
That visit's purpose, aim or goal still eluded me
despite several cupfuls of warm encouragement.
And what of that most peculiar of peculiarities?
Surprising at the time but now considerably intriguing,
was when he stopped mid-sentence,
straightened up, slid back his chair,
rose up from that table and walked slowly out the door.

Now, without clear recollection or even autograph,
I was left to contemplate cold coffee, scrawls and afterthoughts
frantically writ to recapture it as a fading treasure map.
I strained vainly to decipher words, ambiguity;
as some dream dreamt then written down
in brain-fog deep at night.
So, I just sat and thought and stared, remaining lost a while.
Then, when I rose up to leave, the waitress, nearby
stood as a polite reminder...
when everything's been said and done,
I'm left to pay the bill.

Copyright (c) 2004 Gary Brown

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