What Loneliness Can Do

by Bill Edmondson

It can find you in a men’s room
Uphill from the phallic shrine on Molokai
Enter    you enter a life    or what it’s come to
A red marker arrow to the ceiling
Where cliché begins    descends clockwise
Around and around you on whitewashed brick:
In high school    slothy dreams of Charlene
Lipstick on white corduroy
Precocity    a pattern of no work done
Then reckless escape to the sea
Where quick promotion dulls in alcohol
There’s time with a bible    watery confession

In love he’s been romantic    in sex a dog
You turn to follow his drift
To a young woman    her chances sheared
Children appear    are buffeted
More drink and a family tossed off

There’s something you can’t identify    a coil around your neck

Sex again    whatever moves the blood    until

Finally    here in this room
He finishes down at the urinal    commode:
I’m here every Tuesday at 1 p.m.