“What can I do?” His voice is sweet and high and birdy
despite his runny nose and snotclogged ears.
He is out of ideas, and it is only noon.
This is the indolent, gray season,
and I am laid up here
with a twinge in my middle-aged foot
and ten pounds still
left over from the indulgences
of my long-past maternity.
And now his question rattles
around, hectoring me
like freshman philosophy.
What can I do? What should I do?
But I am sure I am a mountain:
unable to move, making my own weather, unawares,
acted on by geologic forces,
that have left me soft and lumpy and unrecognizable
I am sure things are not very much
up to me.
“What can I do?” He wants a blueprint for the perfect afternoon
(which is the same as a perfect life).
I am all out of ideas, too.