The Dharma Bum in Autumn


    he forgave his parents for
having made him, he forgave his
sister
    for her addiction to shopping,
he forgave his friends, he forgave
both of them, he forgave God
    though next time she would
have to do better, he forgave his
baldness, he forgave his stinking
socks, he had been tramping for
years to get here
    he forgave his Oxfam clothes
for falling to pieces, he would have
to re-donate them, he forgave the
cold he had had for as long as he
could remember
    rummaging through his beard for
significance, he forgave that
too, he forgave this poem
    sitting alone, of course on a
bench, by the canal near
Berkhamstead
    the canal by which he had first
had sex outdoors, the canal which
had been his first long walk, the
canal by which he had lived in 3
different towns
    he forgave the canal
    crunching his way through
some hand-baked crisps, slurping
a ridiculously expensive though
healthy detox drink
    he was happy inside this body,
he forgave this perfectly imperfect
world, as the trees did their thing
& yellowed into October
    he praised the glorious litany of
names, from chestnut to hawthorn
to hazel, he forgave the silence he
would never understand
    which was the only thing
reflected in the glistening, smelly
water




Posted: Tue 17 Nov, 2009