How Does Anyone Survive?

Don’t think about it today – Ready Set Wake!
But it scalds the taste buds on the wave of arabica,
dumps out with the cereal prize, arrives
with the mail, mid-afternoon and delayed,
stuck behind some coupon for eggs.

So you get outta dodge – out of The States, for God’s sake –
where you dance in the Midsummer parade and
bathe in the lakes and sweat in the saunas
until you’re bleary-eyed but wide awake.
Where the days overlap like pre-teen chatter, no chance
to cocoon into night, and the light sweeps you up,
clothespins you to the sky – the chance to air dry
those sopping thoughts in the Finnish countryside.

But as you flutter between the birches
it slices down and perches
smack in the middle of your quiet mind
and you think: How does anyone escape?
How does anyone survive?

(2019)