I Wish My Death Six Times

I Wish My Death Six Times

The first, at age of five or six
funny how numbers work that way
I know not why or how or
even what made me wish
at such a young age.

All the answers sit in Dr. Taylor's files
somewhere in Upstate New York at the
Rockland County Mental Health Center
or they have already been destroyed
as they do after ten years
a Mystery that burns and twists
and somewhere within my deep black walls
there may be the answers.
Then again, there may not be.

The second was around age 15
or so and over a woman
driving, being driven actually
in a bright orange pinto
along Old Nyack Turnpike
at faster than correct speeds
my friend tells me that
the woman (16) that I have been in love with
for so long, was with him the night before
they had been dating, we had been best friends
me and this woman (girl)
It was not the thought
that they were together
that nearly allowed me to open my passenger door
and just slide out
at fifty miles per hour
around the curve
the black fever and sickness
of love imploding, the next step,
my carcass sliding and peeling
across rough pavement and gravel
meat grinded me, in the name of love;
but it was the thought instead
that she has willed her love
to another other than me.

The third time was not a wish
but a fancy, a muse mind you
of how to go out properly
that appeals still, to this day
It was thunked up at age 17, perhaps
stoned and in Robi's dorm room
reeking of stale beer, cigarette ash,
marijuana, and hundreds of fresh
xerox copies of our underground rag
('zine, to you young'ns) that I
had decided that the way to go
was at one hundred miles per hour
in a heavy econoline, smoking a joint
with hundreds of pounds of plastique
beneath my seat, crashing through
the front gates of the White House
wanting to take out Ron and Nancy
who were hopefully having dinner
with Deaver and Meese and maybe
in hindsite, with North and with Bennett
the fat pious fuck that he is;
and that would be THE WAY to go
myself and the others and chunks
of white plaster, raining softly
over the nations capital
like a righteous first winter's snow.

The fourth, I had possibly achieved
without knowing just how close I came
diving over the edge of insanity, this
steep dank narrow gorge, lined with sunken
shards of glass and dull razors
The initial "pop" in the back of my head
while trying to improve on John Stuart Mills
"On Liberty" (what lofty pusuits I once had,
all in the name of education and pompousity)
I had choked on refining free speech and
gleefully dove at the edge, missing and tumbling
instead face first into the chasm
thoughts of "nigger lover" and "we'll rape who we
want, when we want" and watching my ex-lover
finally hanging in the bars and dives that
she would never go to with me
and alchol and acid and dope but mostly alcohol;
took me through this gape of earth and life- down,
downward, downwardly to a crash that came as my
palm was split by a drunken toast befoe the stage
in the "Union" as Tommy's and my green beer bottles collided
a drunken frenzy of friendship/love and a unrequieted
acknowledgement that all as we had known it
was to come crashing down
I watched, slipping out of my daze
the flood of red down my arm
and we laughed and hugged and continued
to slam to the Fear tape on the sound system
bloody palm prints on his shrt and my face
when I was grabbed and led to the bar
and through the haze, some woman had sunk my
gashed hand into a pitcher of ice water
and wrapped it in a bar rag, kissing me
and sending me home, somehow

Angel of mercy, I woke alone some time later
and realized that I had died and was reborn
the second coming of this jew-preacher except
when I had risen, it was with personal purpose
and to the good of only myself.

The fifth time was when my wife woke me
at two am after rooting through my computer
she was screaming at me frantically when I woke
I bolted upright panicked, had someone broken in
are our children okay, are we on fire?


It was a love note I had sent, she had found
to a lover I had never kissed or touched
a soul I had met who loved me with all her soul
after my marriage dried and withered with an
explosive force, my heart hacked and cut out with
dull razors and screwdrivers
and a sweet soul that saw salvation within my eyes
It continued, the screaming in the living room
the children, our babies awoken and screaming and crying
themselves, I had no explanations and accepted her blows
to my body, shamed and yet righteous once again
I was justified for wanting to leave
and fetidly disgusted that I had found the need
When the police came, the neighbors afraid that
someone was being hurt, perhaps killed
I sat in the dining room crying at the table
an officer before me looking over my bruises
asking if I wanted to file charges
I was internal, somewhere deep inside
wishing only for the black calm to sweep me down.

The sixth time
was last night
here in my room
behind this screen
which I sit before now
realizing all that was not
not for the first time
and not for the last
since here
I still sit
wishing for dust
a strong wind
to pick me up
blow me across town
into my daughter's windows
so that may breathe me in
one last time
so I can feel myself
being transferred from air
to blood and coarse
through them
feeding them once more
and coming to rest
forever within their souls.

I Wished My Death Six Times