The Dichotomy of It All by Michael Cluff

You sit there
so supreme
and superior
while I toil
below
on the cracked
dusty asphalt
carrying the carrion
students have made
of paper and language
from once living structures
now dead and desiccated
as the cliches and soft thinking
they are now caused and forced
to bring forth
a halted birth
thought gone on vacation
forever.

But you articulate
so directly
no metaphors
straightforward calls
crowraven cawings accompanied
by head bobs
that display contempt
for my two-footed kin and kind.

I stumble oddly
from car to classroom
two classes’ essays
graded in late night
sleep-deprived jolts
of harsh water and jagged chips
nevermore—
dress shirt  a bit  tight
pants a bit too long
shoelaces ready to break
temper frayed like the inner edge
of the tie now slipping its knot
under a collar asphyxiating in intent.

You glance into my window
still unmoved from your perch
in the dogwood tree
caw-laugh
turn your tail to me
and spiritedly fly away.

And I flip you off
sending the over-processed
newly-poured
gourmet coffee
over all-
papers, pants front
shoes, soul
trapped now in heat
while you  glide your way
in the still cool August mist
of a near coastal seven a.m.
Tuesday.

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