The Day That I Finally Understood the Tragedy of the Leaves

Composition I (Still life), Theo van Doesburg

I didn’t notice how yellow
the potted plants had become,
until I woke one day from
another weed-related stupor.
I noticed that my disappointment pooled
in the back of my pupils. I wondered
where the hopeful youth, who
won the scholarship that allows
me to stand here, disappeared to.
It seems that the author and I
grew like the ferns on
the windowsill; Radiant potential
withered slowly in its neglect.

It seems that the tragedy of the leaves
was not the yellowing decay, but rather
the premise of something green.
Having realized that,
I watched Bukowski
self-flagellate at the typewriter
in the company of hollow bottles.
We sat together, wading in
the depths of our self-abuse,
because the world had failed us