Problem Solver, People Person, Attention to Detail
At last, I am the everyone you’ve been
hoping for, the perfect solution of absence
and energy necessary for the job. I recognize
I may have previously lacked certain traits,
minimum qualifications. But now I have flayed
a skilled salesman named Kevin, pulling his thick
skin over my own like a jumpsuit. I have taken
the initiative to taste and become drunk on the cold
blood of a CEO, Mark, whose strong leadership
instincts dripped down my chin like pomegranate juice.
No task is too complex: I am the embodiment
of the digital age, of information that travels
beyond the speed of the mind, beyond the mind’s
single, undistinguished life. My greatest strength
I have saved for last: a full set of ten deft fingers
severed from a software engineer named June,
stitched in among my own for a total of twenty,
which fall like a hard rain over the simple letters
of a keyboard, finishing an email long before I have
even begun to consider what the message should say.
At steady intervals around the office, like cries for help
coming from the bottom of some rural well, the posters
mounted. Nostalgic scene: One man and one woman
in color-blocked eighties pastel jackets, eyelashes white
to the tip with frost, about to summit what must be Everest.
They both look underfed, too tan, but smile convincingly
the smiles of those who have not given thought to the descent.
Another: diapered body, flush with rolls of fat, pushing
up from the mown grass, where are the parents, maybe
neglect is a kind of love without strings attached. The point,
if there is a point, is to learn fast. Get to the summit, snatch
your original breath, toddle, slip out, sexless, cracking
up, again. One step at a time. One more: From the moon,
image of finished Earth, pleasant font, Don’t worry,
take your time. Even He needed six days. Sounds a lot
like sloth. If only the job were as simple as making form
from void, as adding text. Control is a place you can visit.
Not once am I reminded of Donne as we pinch little specks out of the cat’s ears, neck, belly, pits. But isn’t it dreamy: propped on our elbows in bed, Beach House’s gauzy rhythms suggest our state of undress to the neighbors. You need to be naked so as not to let the little riders spring into your sleeves. Combing through the cat and focused on her lemon fur, tufts floating off, soft frenzy. Your fine hands at task, catching fleas in flight, mid-jump. Cozy enough, though what did the vet call the cat? “Kill vector”? Then with a plastic tube marked revolution, poisoned the skin of her neck. One of those rare spots on the cat body that neither paw nor tongue can touch. I have always dreamt of not being the oppressive regime, but today’s business is pure genocide. The sheer quantity of tiny piston legs now piled on a wet paper towel. Though we want them dead, we share a deep sympathy for the flea. Not sympathy, exactly—recognition of the way one jumps for a short living, then is abruptly banned from nibbling on the planks of one’s front porch. In a corner, some untidy spot, indeed. Home, if there is such a place, is where the heart spins blood up to the skin; where the living outnumber the dead, and the work being done feels better than the infinite leisure we had imagined.
Image Credit: Houses at L’Estaque (1908), Georges Braque