I’m getting older.
The dishes are piling up in the sink.
I still run into potholes on the road.
And the bathroom mirror reflects seven years
Of bad luck and counting.
I pictured life would be cleaner, an easy swipe
On a knife with a sponge.
But even with prescriptions, adulthood
Is kind of messy
And, if you want me to be perfectly honest,
I’m starting to like it that way.
It reminds me of last August, when I started driving
Down rubbery roads salted with dust,
Framed by ancient trees.
The only time I stopped was to find a place to sleep—
And to find a place to belong—mostly barrooms,
Brick buildings with sloppy paint jobs covering the doors
And sometimes the windows.
Tired overweight men would meet me there after work, talking
To me as a daughter, but confessing they only gave
Me secrets because they couldn’t talk like this
with their wives anymore.
Once I realized I wasn’t home, I left again
Until I stopped searching for a finale
And just drove to the next town before I got bored,
Then grew so comfortable
When I stopped looking,
If I found anything at all.
I came back after the first cool front
And everything was still a mess,
But why bother cleaning up what’s
Meant to collect grime overtime.
It’s not failure to thrive, but
to survive despite the conditions,
growing older and maybe, somewhat
growing up to know a little more since birth.