Long Week Talking
I am ashamed to keep thinking of death
as a chute that connects to the garbage. I know
I should picture it more like the pneumatic tubes
at banks of the past: you put in your name
and your paper and up you go. I know a bank
should be the operative metaphor
for every facet of existence, every time. I’m sorry
I haven’t more regularly made reference
to a bank. When I fail to liken something to a bank,
that’s how I can tell I’m tired. That’s not me,
I assure everybody. That’s the long week talking. Time
for bed. Time for the window, the hectoring sky,
the streetlight bright as the bright saved people
see before they die, but I don’t die.
Copyright © 2023 by Natalie Shapero. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on September 4, 2023, by the Academy of American Poets.