Cane in hand and bald head pale,
he slurs for devices to crack
the hollow crust of pain.
The plate of food is picked at
on pillowed knee and he stares
at the window’s painted movement.
Day collages dark cast and enlightened mist.
He says, He’s just not like he was before,
to the gifted copy singing through speakers on the floor.
The true moment long passed, the gift still circles
again and again for rebirth in willing imaginations.
Perhaps the truth was too conscious of the old man listening.
Rain drapes the ever streets of our routed motions.
The old man stares, but at ocean breath
and sun-baked skin. His own truth calls.
Cane taps the death (a crack in the pain)
and I wonder: what listening voice was it
plumbed the depths of his fragile ear
where his own giving lay disguised?