Crossing the Bridge

Young and hopeful, I asked:
What do you think of this poem?

Maybe he would like it.
Maybe he would at least be kind.

But he said only this:
Consider euthanasia.

I stood disbelieving
as a freeze crept over my brain.

I took my poem back.
There was nothing to do but leave.

Sitting alone later,
I found a welcoming pathway.

It led to a mind bridge
to the solace that comes from wit.

Crossing over the bridge
I found a visual garden.

* * *

Give it too many pills
and watch the poem nod away.

Shoot it full in the head
and watch the words splatter the wall.

Hang it by its title
and watch it jerk till it was still.

Slit its wrists with a blade
and watch its images seep out.

Drive it into a tree
and watch all the verses crumple.

* * *

Playing in the garden,
I could laugh and go far away.

Then the meanness faded,
letting my pen write once again.

Harry W. Yeatts Jr.