Memory serves the midnight mind / Mark Bromberg

to keep the days right-side up
from colliding on one another
even as the pictures keep sliding
across the gray desk
at the midnight-mind detective agency

"we have a set of pictures
here, if you need reminding ...
d'you remember that one?"
Nah. This one, tho ...
how old is that one?
Really? Wow.

A picture in my Burroughs fedora
circa 1978 party high or
talking Syracuse-smack with Lou
at the record shop

the right three chords with Joey Ramone
in a Patti Smith snowstorm

gee I remember those now
(Andy Warhol voice,
a little shy)

Lookit that
there's the Polaroid
Joy took when
the nudnik in front of me
asked if Lou was
ever-gonna-play-with-Sting, ya know?
Whatta question!

What I really remember now
are the words
written in blotched ink on a napkin
folded in half on itself

evidence of serious gray matters
with the first words of the poems
about each one of those days
found in a forgotten box
in the attic

Real eyeball-kicks
Oh yeah

I remember those days now
but from this distance
somehow I like
the old word trails better
old pictures fade
the old words last

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