as a piece of light
observed I slip into wave
split into two
places at once

things get difficult then
I forget the rent
forget your birthday
try to remember

luminosity and distance
skip the parts with talking
hear days stutter by like
piano passage in distant song

I lose the thread
this is how I while
keep the days away
put them back into

cloud forget leisure
remember debts

drive into horizons’
endless west like California can save us

like we will never find the ocean
only verdant fields
of strawberries and avocado
eternity our conception

of on and on—
but in a town without water

I am a greedy drunk
I get mean and short
this is my inheritance—
I call my dad he’s on his pills

I’ve had a few
we stumble through
a conversation
I didn’t hear about

his nerves or years of distance
and then we suddenly made sense
why we do and why we split
into iteration—

the more I learn about light
the more the world slips away
an idea we agree upon
to get on with our building until

Robert Balun received his MFA from The City College of New York, where he was a recipient of the Jerome Lowell DeJur Prize in Creative Writing and the Teacher-Writer Award. His debut chapbook, Self (Ceremony), is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. His poems have appeared in Bodega, Similar Peaks, smoking glue gun, Heavy Feather Review, Word Riot, and others. He teaches creative writing and composition at The City College of New York.

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1 Response to Physics

  1. I like how scientific intersections have been entwined with ordinary life events. Great read!

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