Look away

by Esin Penrith
Where's the surface
I was ten and in school when I lost it
I didn't know what
or where
I looked in my bag
my desk
my locker

I looked in the bottom of a bottle
thousands of bottles
a decade of bottles
I found something there
but it was not my salvation
it didn't kill what it was supposed to

I looked in a woman's sex
the simplest part of a woman
racking them up like a rock star
only thing I learned was how to fuck and how to keep count
sixty seventy eighty...
but they are all scared
more scared than me
and that scares me

I looked in War
Learning discipline was learning to obey
learning to obey was learning to kill
ending peoples suffering with a five pound trigger pull
death just like life can be insipid

I looked in college
in classrooms and hundred dollar textbooks
in taylor expansion, fourier series and brownian motion
in uncertainty principle and something called a gluon
in plate tectonics
sliding spreading subducting fucked-up faults
but learning to think like everyone else wasn't learning at all

I looked down the barrel of a gun
but I'm too damn prideful
that's already been done
done in the dirt
rotting with great men no longer great
no longer drinking in the warm splash of a cuban sun
rotting like it runs in the family

I looked in drugs baby
speed, dirty white-trash speed
ex, almost found it there
but it was a false prophet
like all the rest
different dot-com versions of a
neon jesus, mo and the buddha
can't have shepherds without any sheep

I looked in abstinence
abstinence of humanity
of honesty
no feeling
no responsibility
no guilt
that got me close
closer then I've been in awhile
but that was flawed too
that's cheating
breaking the rules man
they won't let you skip out on your pain like that
someone's got to get it
and it sure as hell won't be them

I looked in L.A.
in Dubuque
in Dennise
in San Fran and Amsterdam
I looked in Lothlorian and Lisbon
in mom and Barcardi 151
in Jesse, Erik and Joe
I looked in Caroline and quickmix
thrift stores and contact lenses
I looked in Houston, Oceanside, Omaha and Kenya
I looked in that sweet, green fairy from Prague;
the pyramids, Petra and the dead sea
I looked in Jacksonville, Hawaii and Virginia Beach
357, 45 and 9 mil
I looked in Kuwait, Kristine and Covina
Souix City, Singapore and Hong Kong
I looked in poor little Bernadette in Australia
in Alan Watts, fuck buddies and ferris wheels
in STD
in Coelho
and Maugham

What a waste
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