I must get it back again.

The index finger strokes the words

and white dust particles tumble from the board

and vanish. The old classroom,

with its slumping chairs and wizened desks,

is a jumbo shoebox lacking figurines;

the shoebox Danny kept in his school desk

and took out at recess (only at recess).

Oh, Danny. He was always losing figurines.

The abandoned hamster wheel squeaks on its rust

on the sill by the window (glued shut with lead paint)

that looks into the empty schoolyard,

where the cries of children and dead saints

echo for two thousand years.

I cannot get it back again.

Did I have it at all?

Stroke, crumble, tumble.

Was there every a time when time was not? –

when I held a single sacred second in my palm

like a dismal, dripping diamond drawn

from the self-inflicted leg wound of a miner?

I recollect a time which

cannot now be recollected.

Now cannot be recollected,

and Now is only recollected.

I must get it back again.

The index finger strokes the words

and gray dust particles fly from the page

and vanish. The acid and lignin,

with voracious appetite and stubborn will,

are devourers eating our remains;

the remains we keep in notepads and books

to read at recess (only at recess).

That’s why we write on computers now,

our mediums to call it back again.

It cannot be gotten back again.

This composition alone matters,

This composition, its parents and its children,

both children of its flesh

and children of its promise.

This composition will be saved through childbearing.