Why I Can’t Be There

by Joan Mazza

My parakeet has a toothache,
and the crows have called a meeting.

Bird flocks are my nearest neighbors
so I must share heavy labors,

build shelter, nests against the cold
between the logs, and clean out mold.

Have fun. Don’t think of me alone.
I have Internet and two phones.

The books downstairs are acting up,
calling me an elite white snob.

I said I’d come to your party,
dinner, dance, fête. I’m heartily

sorry. I won’t be there. My fleece
pajamas need me close. Peace

to you and yours on this cold day.
Just tell others I’ve gone astray.

Copyright 2015, Joan Mazza

Joan Mazza has worked as a medical microbiologist, psychotherapist, and seminar leader. Author of six self-help psychology books, including Dreaming Your Real Self (Penguin/Putnam), her poetry has appeared in Rattle, The MacGuffin, Mezzo Cammin, Buddhist Poetry Review, and The Nation. Joan ran away from the hurricanes of South Florida to be surprised by the earthquakes and tornadoes of rural central Virginia, where she writes poetry and does fabric and paper art. www.JoanMazza.com

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