Jim Trainer

My Beautiful Day

In Uncategorized on October 4, 2018 at 1:05 pm

the headline read:
Grim Day For A Small Town
then the cop came over
to the periodicals rack
told me there’s a
NO HAT& NO SUNGLASSES policy
in the
CITY OF AUSTIN PUBLIC LIBRARY
but I could put my cap on backwards
if I wanted
so I did.

the clerks at checkout looked on
as I stood
at the info desk
I stood there for minutes
until
it was obvious I was doing something wrong
I picked up the info desk sign
flipped it around
it read:
INFO DESK CLOSED PLEASE GO TO
SECOND FL
CITY OF AUSTIN PUBLIC LIBRARY
so I went up
asked her
“Do you have
The Days Run Away Like Wild Horses Over The Hills by Charles Bukowski?”

I got the book
went back downstairs
and the clerk at checkout
told me
I’d have to pay
$60
in overdue fees,
but if I still had the overdue book
I could bring it back
and
they wouldn’t have to fill out
“all that paper work”
(I would have paid the $60 but I didn’t want to be a bother.)
I went back up to the
SECOND FL
to the copiers
but I had no cash
so
I went back down
past the clerks at
checkout
past the smiling cop
and out onto the street.
I passed the hulking courthouse,
stood
waited
and crossed.
the ATM took $2
of my money
and my bank took 3.
I walked back into the
CITY OF AUSTIN PUBLIC LIBRARY
turned my cap around
passed the clerks
at checkout
back up to the SECOND FL
and grabbed the book.
The copy card dispenser
took my $1
gave me .40 cents
I made two copies
went back down
and I was back out
on the street.

then I bought two roses
from Billy
on the corner.
he’s half blind
terribly overweight
and an amputee.
“Thanks Billy.”

no one’s got a right to any
King pain
we do our own suffering
or we
find a way
to make someone else pay
“Be careful,” Billy said
behind me
as I walked into the sun.

 

Winter 2014

Winter 2014 Austin TX

This poem originally appeared in Natalie Wilson’s wonderful A Series of Moments.

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