Ode to My Camus
Shell monotone cover, softly inked pages, where have you not come with me
speaking of cigarettes and cigarettes and cigarettes and cigarettes.
A self-imposed Sisyphus, tiger in a cage of one’s design, jubilant freedom!
Pregnant with possibilities in nothingness, that was how you saw
your corner of the world, in the dim kitchen lighting of a grieving son,
a frozen image of thought recreated in consumption.
I chase pearls upon your unruly grease-stained pages,
streaked with revelation in transitory moments, as passive as
one’s tongue’s supple movements bending around the curve of a cigarette.
Your spine supple enough, with consistent contortion in my collection of bags,
On the TTC, to appointments, class fifteen’s, golden-hour parks.
Travelling across cities with ease, dialogue undeviating—a dependable guy
Camus, stasis in death’s ceaseless hurtles—a relationship intimate, digested,
like words that have sat upon one’s tongue without knowing it,
coming to surface to free you, an intimacy that lends itself,
with the power of knowledge, however damning.
Walking in Downtown Toronto
Sunny September post-class, ice-cream-bordered storefronts
on Carlton, a woman standing on a labyrinth fire escape, naked
as she was born, beckoning a smoking lover in from the cool heat.
A gathering of friends in a mint Baldwin shoebox,
bound windows not withholding raucous laughter, last supper freedom,
Smash Bros on plasma, shakily entering PEEN and WALT.
Dimly lit screens, Sphinx-rigid green-eyed cat in front of a Tiffany lamp, searching gaze
looking for meaning in the city’s quick tableau vivant, spangled rats the star.
Loose cats, free birds rotationally passing; peacock enemy—agents cool as an ice cube.
Feet of the seer light, nanoseconds hoarded like corners of litter,
garbage remodelled, compiled cacophony, motley of multi-coloured fragments,
stored for the sake of poeticism, insatiable Cronus, devourer of image.